News & Notes: Animal rights advocates urge legal action against Harvard's New England Primate Center
The advocacy group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals sent a letter to the Worcester County District Attorney's office last week, urging it to pursue criminal charges against the Harvard researchers responsible for the care of primates that were allegedly mistreated, the Harvard Crimson reported on Monday.
Harvard’s New England Primate Center is facing scrutiny after reports that several of its monkeys have died from inadequate care. The U.S. Department of Agriculture launched an investigation when six monkeys died soon after being transferred from the Harvard facility to the Oregon Zoo in May 2014.
After an internal review of what it called “self-identified events” in 2011, Harvard restructured its leadership and implemented more rigorous standards for the Center’s practice and operations, the Crimson reported. The medical school has also said it remains committed to addressing any outstanding problems.
The University has faced similar scrutiny recently over its care of its marmoset monkeys. Animal rights groups have alleged most recently that negligence at a University laboratory led to two marmoset monkeys' injuries, according to an April 13 Daily Princetonian article.