The BUAV, as a member of the ECEAE (European Coalition to End Animal Experiments) has criticised Members of the European Parliament Agriculture Committee for missing an opportunity to discuss key issues on the future law on the protection of animals used in laboratories. At the meeting which took place on 28th June, Ms Elisabeth Jegge (Rapporteur for the Parliament) qualified the compromise agreed with the Council of Ministers as balanced yet imperfect.
The revision of Directive 86/609/EEC started in November 2008 with the publication of the European Commission proposal, which included reasonable provisions in favour of more animal protection. After 18 months of negotiations, most of the strongest proposals have been considerably weakened. Yet, the Rapporteur and other committee members insisted that the draft law was the best compromise possible.
The BUAV disagrees with this. Only one representative of this committee raised concerns over the agreement: Jill Evans, member of the Green Party, noted that the current draft still does not restrict the use of non-human primates, does not allow researchers to use non-animal alternative methods when these are immediately available, and does not allow individual member states to go further than the future legislation. The Rapporteur did not address these issues, and recommended MEPs to avoid tabling amendments to this draft instead.
The agreement is to be voted in mid-July by Agriculture Committee members before a vote in plenary in September.
The BUAV and ECEAE will continue to monitor the revision process and encourage MEPs to address the key issues before the votes.
29th June 2010