The use of the cruel and invalid Forced Swim Test by Victoria University of Wellington, was exposed at the University Open Day today, so prospective students could be warned about the flawed and unethical research being conducted at the institute.
The Forced Swim Test involves forcing small animals such as rats or mice to swim in an inescapable beaker of water until they ‘give up’ and float. The test reportedly attempts to mimic depression or hopelessness in humans, which the students say the University should end on ethical and scientific grounds.
The action organised by NZAVS and animal rights organisation SAFE, saw a very striking and bold mobile billboard being parked directly outside the Victoria University Kelburn campus, during the open day event (from 6 am — 3 pm). A team of volunteers accompanied the billboard with placards, banners, flyers and stickers, to raise awareness of the test within the current and future student body.
We were incredibly hard to miss as we stood to expose the use of the cruel and invalid Forced Swim Test by Victoria University! Countless students walked past us, read our important message and stopped to talk — many students and prospective students were shocked that this test even existed!
Students have a right to know that the University still conducts archaic animal tests like the Forced Swim Test. On Open Day the University wants to show its best side. Our presence made sure that prospective students visiting the campus found out what it’s really like at Vic Uni.
Not only is the Forced Swim Test cruel but it fails to model human depression. This test is less predictive than chance at determining if a compound would have efficacy in humans. Victoria University is wasting valuable resources, including time and money, each time they approve this test.
Many more people and prospective students are now aware of this cruel animal test and Vic Uni's refusal to ban it.
This is just the beginning. We need to defend the animals used in cruel tests like this and end the use of the horrific Forced Swim Test! Our next action aimed at encouraging Victoria University to ban the Forced Swim Test will be announced soon.
Victoria University — It's time to right your wrong and ban the Forced Swim Test!
The billboard is now spending the rest of the week on one of our awesome supporter's front lawn (whose house is right beside a bus stop!) — thank you for lending your land to this important cause Russell, many more people will learn about this awful test thanks to you!
- Evidence that the Forced Swim Test has been conducted at Victoria University.
- PETA is now targeting Victoria University’s use of the Forced Swim Test too.
- More information about the Forced Swim Test.