Thank you for your support during 2012. It has been an incredibly busy year for the BUAV and I am so proud of what we have achieved for the animals, but of course we could not have done this without the generosity of our supporters.
During 2012, we have continued to be the voice for animals in laboratories and lead the international campaign to end animal experiments, gaining important national and international media coverage for our work as well as the support of politicians and celebrities.
In March, with the support of our ambassador Ricky Gervais, we launched Cruelty Free International, the first global organisation dedicated to ending product testing on animals worldwide. It has truly been an inspirational time for myself and my team and, with the support of our partner organisations, we have placed the issue of cosmetics testing on the global agenda. In countries around the world we have held key meetings with government and industry representatives to take forward our global goal to end the use of animals for cosmetics testing once and for all.
In the EU, there has been encouraging news for our No Cruel Cosmetics campaign to end the import and sale of cosmetics tested on animals. The BUAV, along with our partners in the ECEAE, has campaigned for 20 years to achieve an EU free of animal tested cosmetics. We are now closer to achieving this than ever before.
Our Investigations Team has continued to play a vital role in exposing the hidden cruelty and suffering that the research industry would prefer was kept hidden from view. The images of slaughtered monkeys piled in bins like garbage on the holiday island of Mauritius caused an international outcry. Here in the UK, our Science Team made headline news after uncovering shocking kitten sight deprivation research at Cardiff University. We also remain leaders in providing expert opinion at conferences and stakeholder meetings working to end animal experiments and to promote non-animal alternatives.
The BUAV has continued to enjoy high profile media coverage as the leading voice for animals suffering in laboratories, ensuring this important issue is kept in the public eye. We have appeared in international and national newspapers, featured on leading radio and television shows and appeared on websites across the globe. In the UK, we have featured in the Daily Mail, The Sunday Times, the Guardian, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Express and The Daily Telegraph.
Other achievements of which I am especially proud include our 2009 investigation into the animal testing of Dysport (a type of botox) at Wickham Laboratories and subsequent Judicial Review proceedings, which this year forced the Government to ensure that animal testing for cosmetics botox will end. We also persuaded the Home Office to amend legislation that could have become law in the UK, which would have allowed stray animals, including cats and dogs, to be used in experiments.
This holiday season please do your bit for the animals and look for the Leaping Bunny when buying presents for family and friends. . Nearly 500 companies are now certified under the Leaping Bunny scheme, which guarantees products and their ingredients are free from animal testing, providing a huge selection of festive gifts for both men and women. For a full list of certified companies please visit www.gocrueltyfree.org
2013 promises to be an ever busier time for us! We have an exciting start to the New Year with the partnership of our sister organisation, Cruelty Free International, and luxury hair care brand Paul Mitchell® to promote the cruelty-free message. Look out for Paul Mitchell® high profile adverts, exclusive products and special packaging in thousands of hair salons across the UK and Europe, all promoting Cruelty Free International.
As the year comes to an end, a heartfelt thank you from everyone here at the BUAV for your support during 2012. We could not have achieved as much as we have for the animals without the kindness and generosity of you, our supporters. Please continue to support us during 2013.
I wish you a peaceful holiday and a very happy New Year!
Until next time…….