The EU citizens' initiative (EBI) "Save Cruelty-Free Cosmetics" emerges from the verification process of the signatures with 1,2 million valid votes. The EU Commission must deal with the demands.
The ASSOCIATION AGAINST ANIMAL FACTORIES is celebrating a huge success for the animals today. After completing the signature verification in the member states, it is now clear: The ECI for a Europe free of animal testing significantly exceeds the requirement of 1 million votes! The European Commission is now obliged to meet with the campaigners to discuss the demands in detail and to discuss their implementation. The three key demands of the EBI are the implementation and strengthening of the existing animal testing ban for cosmetics, a switch to animal-free methods for testing chemicals and the design of a realistic, actionable plan to eliminate all animal testing.
More than 10 million animals suffer in animal experiments in the EU every year. Although the animal testing industry has long stated that it is pursuing the so-called 3Rs strategy to reduce animal testing, this number hardly changes. In Austria it was even higher in 2021 than in the previous year. But the development of non-animal methods is progressing rapidly, paving the way for change. It was even decided recently in the USAthat it is no longer necessary to test new drugs on animals. Organoids (mini-organs), multi-organ chips or computer-based methods can be used instead.
The EU citizens' initiative strongly supports the EU Parliament's call for the abolition of animal testing. With the voice of the public, the Commission cannot ignore the loud calls for a switch to animal-free research, says Tilly Metz, MEP, Greens – European Free Alliance.*
The initiative was launched in August 2021 by Cruelty Free Europe, the Eurogroup for Animals, the European Coalition to End Animal Experiments and PETA. Together with a number of other animal protection organizations, including the VEREIN GEGEN TIERFABRIKEN in Austria, signatures were collected for a year. Support came from renowned cosmetics companies such as The Body Shop, Dove and Lush, as well as hundreds of celebrities such as Paul McCartney, Ricky Gervais, Finnish heavy metal band Lordi, Italian singer Red Canzian, French journalist Hugo Clément and actress Evanna Lynch. The social media scene also participated intensively.
No other ECI has seen such a level of support from so many different countries. In order to be successful, an ECI must have at least one million confirmed votes and a certain target number of votes must be reached in at least seven member states. "Save Cruelty-Free Cosmetics" closes at 1,2 million and has met that target in 22 member states. Among them is Austria with 14.923 valid votes. This shows the Europe-wide consensus that animal testing must be ended.
VGT campaigner Denise Kubala, MSc., is delighted:
The success of this ECI is a huge step in the right direction! EU citizens speak out more than clearly against animal testing. Now politics is called upon and must act.
Photo / Video: VGT.