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H.R.5852 - Great Ape Protection Act
To prohibit the conducting of invasive research on great apes, and for other purposes.
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April 17, 2008
Mr. TOWNS (for himself, Mr. ALLEN, Mr. BARTLETT of Maryland, Mr. BRALEY of Iowa, Mr. LANGEVIN, Mr. REICHERT, Mr. CAMPBELL of California, and Mrs. BONO MACK) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce, and in addition to the Committees on Ways and Means and Foreign Affairs, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concernedCommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSE.
(1) Advances in scientific knowledge reveal that our nearest living relatives, great apes (including chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas, orangutans and gibbons), bear an exceedingly close genetic relationship to humans.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(2) Great apes are highly intelligent and social animals and research laboratory environments involving invasive research cannot meet their complex social and psychological needs.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(3) Confinement of great apes for purposes of invasive research causes these intelligent and sentient animals to experience harmful stress and suffering, such as profound depression and withdrawal, self mutilation that can result in physical wounding, hair pulling, rocking, and other traumatized or psychotic behaviors.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(5) The majority of invasive research and testing conducted on great apes in the United States is for the end purpose of developing drugs, pharmaceuticals, and other products to be sold in the interstate market.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(7) Care in a research laboratory for a single great ape over the lifespan of the great ape of more than 50 years can cost between $300,000 and $500,000, compared to an approximate cost of $275,000 for high quality care in a sanctuary.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(8) An overwhelming majority of invasive research procedures performed on great apes involve some element of interstate commerce, such that great apes, equipment, and researchers have traveled across state lines.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(10) Australia, Austria, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden, and the United Kingdom have banned or severely limited experiments on great apes and several other countries and the European Union are considering similar bans as well.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(12) In December 2000, the Chimpanzee Health Improvement, Maintenance, and Protection (CHIMP) Act was signed into law, requiring the Federal Government to provide for permanent `retirement' of chimpanzees who are identified `as no longer being needed in research'.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(13) In May 2007, the National Institutes of Health's National Center for Research Resources' (NCRR) decided to permanently end funding for the breeding of Government-owned chimpanzees for research.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 3. PROHIBITIONS.
(c) Transport Prohibition- No person shall knowingly import, export, transport, move, deliver, receive, possess, rent, loan, purchase, or sell a great ape for the purpose of conducting invasive research on such great ape.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(e) Exemption- Nothing in this Act shall be construed to limit or prevent individualized medical care performed on a great ape by a licensed veterinarian for the benefit of the great ape.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 4. RETIREMENT.
(a) In General- Subject to subsection (b), the Secretary of Health and Human Services shall provide for the permanent retirement of all great apes owned or under the control of the Federal Government that have been used for invasive research.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(b) Exception- The Secretary of Health and Human Services may provide for the euthanizing of a great ape owned or under the control of the Federal Government that has been used for invasive research if euthanasia is in the best interests of such great ape, as determined by an attending veterinarian and endorsed by a second, unaffiliated veterinarian.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 5. DEFINITIONS.
(A) close observation of natural or voluntary behavior of a great ape, provided that the research does not require removal of the great ape from the social group or environment of such great ape or require an anesthetic or sedation event to collect data or record observations; orCommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(1) means that a great ape is placed in a suitable sanctuary that will provide for the lifetime care of the great ape and such great ape will not be used in further invasive research; andCommentsClose CommentsPermalink