Right now, eight states have laws against the sale of animal-tested cosmetics. These include California, New Jersey, Maine, and Illinois. Recently, a similar bill passed through New York's State Assembly and Senate. The state's governor Kathy Hochul must now sign it into law.
However, a provision in FDASLA, which gives the FDA greater oversight of cosmetics, could render these laws useless. According to Cruelty Free International (CFI): "Glaringly absent from this part of the bill is any mention of prohibiting animal testing for cosmetics."
"What’s more, the bill contains a broad preemption clause that could nullify all state-level cruelty-free cosmetics laws that we have worked so hard to pass in recent years."
It added that FDASLA contains 35 pages of new requirements for cosmetic manufacturers. But "not a single word" addresses cosmetic animal tests.
Consumers are against animal testing
Kristie Sullivan is the vice president of research for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, a nonprofit with more than 17,000 doctors. The organization co-sponsored California's cosmetic animal testing ban.
Sullivan said: “If Congress passes this provision, painful and unnecessary tests on animals in the cosmetics industry will continue without limits. States would be prohibited from banning these tests in the future."
More consumers than ever are against animal testing. In 2019, a survey by CFI found that more than 70 percent of US consumers oppose cosmetic animal testing. It also found that nearly 80 percent would support a federal ban on the practice.
CFI hasn't given up hope. It maintains that there is still time to alter FDASLA. It notes that this can be done by adding provisions included in the Humane Cosmetics Act, which would ban cosmetic animal testing across the US, to the bill.
Monica Engebretson, CFI's North America head of public affairs, said: "If amended, [the act] provides an opportunity to reflect consumer values and affirm state action to end animal testing for cosmetics."
CFI is urging people to call their US Senators (find contact information for yours here). The organization says people should state their support for "adding humane cosmetics language" to the FDASLA.
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