Activists March Against Oxford

In late January, about 200 activist showed up to march against Oxford University in an event organized by SPEAK. Oxford is moving ahead with plans to construct its animal research facility, and SPEAK and other activists apparently see this as drawing a line in the sand — if they can stop this from being built, the activists apparently believe they’ll create a cascading effect that will bring down animal research around the world (odd — I thought the perpetually imminent closure of Huntingdon Life Sciences was going to have that effect.

Anyway, here’s a statement SPEAK circulated earlier this year about its focus on Oxford University,


The animal rights movement is on the verge of achieving a truly historic victory against Oxford University. The ramifications for the vivisection industry both in this country and abroad cannot be underestimated: it could even in the long run mean the end of the vivisection industry in this country and ultimately, where the UK vivisection industry leads, the world follows.

This Saturday will see a National Demonstration take place against Oxford University’s plans to build another animal research facility. At SPEAK we appreciate that people may have other things to do on a Saturday, however, it cannot be stressed enough, just how important a good turn out will be. For the last 7 months work has not taken place at South Parks Rd. The University has been scrabbling around to find a company gullible enough to take on the new contract.

Recent newspaper articles have reported the University as stating that the resumption of work is imminent. The tone of their statements has been both bullish and arrogant; their posturing is confrontational. It is vitally important that on Saturday the animal rights movement sends a loud and clear message to both the University and more importantly any potential contractor, that we are not going away and that we intend to fight them every inch of the way.

If we are able to prevent the completion of the new lab, the negative effect it is going to have on the vivisection industry will be immeasurable but one thing is clear – it will be a devastating blow to the vivisection industry and the ripples from the aftermath of such a victory has the potential to be felt the world over.

Last July, work on the new lab ceased, 7 months later, all is still quiet. The animal rights movement has achieved great things but we can achieve more and with a final push we can put an end to Oxford University’s goal of expanding its vivisection capabilities. Victory is within our grasp but its up to you to make it a reality. Everyone who truly cares about the plight of animals’ needs to ask themselves at the beginning of 2005: what am I going to do in order to defeat the plans by Oxford University to build another animal research centre? The animals need all of us to defend them – let’s make sure we don’t let them down. Let’s make 2005 a year to remember, a year that finally sees the demise of vivisection the world over.

Together we can and will win.

Great Britain is the world leader and trendsetter in animal research? Talk about being disconnected from reality.

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