For Immediate Release:
February 14, 2023
Amanda Hays 202-483-7382
Phoenix – PETA will soon unveil its eye-opening exhibit “Without Consent,” which explores the troubled history of experiments on nonconsenting animals, in Phoenix. The installation challenges institutions, including Arizona State University (ASU) and the University of Washington’s (UW) macaque-breeding facility outside Mesa, to rethink this exploitative, expensive, cruel, and archaic concept of science.
Modeled after the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, “Without Consent” will be on display locally for five days as part of a national tour. It features 24 panels with descriptions and photographs of nearly 200 animal experiments conducted at U.S. institutions from the 1920s through today. An interactive virtual exhibit is also available here.
When: February 21–March 4, 12 noon–4 p.m.
Where: Intersection of N. Second and E. Taylor streets, Phoenix
“Without Consent” makes the point that vulnerable humans—including orphans in tuberculosis and psychological experiments, immigrant women in gynecological surgeries, soldiers in LSD and poison gas tests, and impoverished Black men in syphilis experiments—were exploited in experiments. Just as society now understands that these experiments were wrong, “Without Consent” shows we need to let a similar moral awakening guide our conduct today by extending consideration to other nonconsenting sentient beings who suffer and die in experiments from floor-cleaner product tests to mother-infant separation studies.
“‘Without Consent’ tells the true stories of animals harmed and killed in experiments that they did not and could not consent to,” says Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “Humans are only one animal species among many. Having the power to exploit the others does not give us the right to do so.”
At ASU, experimenters bound tiny marmoset monkeys into restraint chairs, leaving only their heads free; implanted metal posts into their skulls; and subjected them to behavioral testing for up to 46 days. Other experimenters inflicted injuries on monkeys’ spinal cords, deprived the animals of sustenance, forced them to walk on a treadmill in exchange for a bit of food or water, and then killed them. ASU experimenters also implanted catheters along rats’ necks, administered cocaine repeatedly to the animals through IVs, forced them to endure behavioral testing, and withheld food from them, providing only cocaine or sugar as a reward for pressing a lever.
UW and its breeding facility have sent diseased monkeys to experimenters across the country, violated health and veterinary regulations, failed to prevent the introduction and spread of deadly diseases among monkeys, and been repeatedly cited for multiple violations of animal welfare laws—all while breeding monkeys next to a toxic waste site. Over a six-week period in 2021, five infant monkeys in UW’s Mesa breeding colony died from malnourishment, pneumonia, or diarrheal disease before even being used in an experiment.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information on PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please visit PETA.org, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.