WASHINGTON, D.C. – An online petition was started by the Human Society of the United States after the United States Department of Agriculture deleted various animal welfare records from its website last week.
The records included animal welfare violations at testing labs, zoos, aquariums, “puppy mills,” and other facilities in the United States.
The USDA issued a statement this week stating that these changes are “not final” and that “adjustments are being made regarding information appropriate for release and posting.”
The statement also claimed that the review by its Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has been ongoing and the agency decided to make these adjustments in 2016, well before President Donald Trump and his administration took office.
The HSUS is not directly affiliated with local humane societies or with the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, although its website claims to work with them and support them through “training, evaluations, publications, and other professional services.”
The Humane Society was in the news last week after being targeted by the watchdog group HumaneWatch.org in a pre-kickoff Super Bowl commercial titled “Lawyers and Cages,” alleging that the group is motivated by politics and that people should donate to their local humane society instead.
There are over 20 animal research facilities in North Texas. There are approximately 20,000 animals being used for research in the State of Texas, according to a 2015 USDA Report. Those don’t include animals like mice, rats, and birds, which are not reported, but make up an estimated 90 percent of animals used in testing.
(© 2017 WFAA)
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