Stop the Australian Defence Force’s War on Animals

Posted on by Ashley Fruno

PigMost other species don’t start wars, yet they often become the victims of ours. For too long, the Australian Defence Force (ADF) has inflicted serious injuries – including massive haemorrhaging, multi-organ wounds and bone fractures – on live pigs in cruel trauma training exercises, even though superior non-animal methods are available and widely used by other military training facilities.

Medical training guidelines published by Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council state that “[t]raining methods which do not use animals must be adopted wherever possible”, and armies around the world, including those of more than three-quarters of all NATO countries as well as the NATO Centre of Excellence for Military Medicine, use human simulators and other modern non-animal methods in trauma training.

Non-animal methods save animals’ lives, and they’re better at equipping trainees with the technical skills and psychological preparedness necessary to treat battlefield injuries. A study published in a 2012 issue of the journal ISRN Emergency Medicine found that using Simulab Corporation’s TraumaMan is superior to animal-based training for completing the surgical skills lab of the Advanced Trauma Life Support course, which is the international version of the course taught by the ADF. The study also found that simulator-based training was preferred by 78 per cent of students and 93 per cent of instructors.

Simulators also save money because they can be used over and over again. Yet Australia continues to lag behind, giving its military medical trainees a second-rate education and causing massive suffering by using live animals.

PETA has written to the former and current Minister of Defence and the Assistant Minister for Defence, but no action has been taken to stop cruel trauma training. Please help us keep the pressure on the ADF to modernise its training by switching to humane, non-animal methods today.

Posted by Jason Baker