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Advocates March to Home of MetLife CEO Steven Kandarian To Protest Abandoned Chimps

July 28, 2016 by Leave a Comment


The News

In spite of petitions, protests and letters from concerned citizens around the world, MetLife CEO Steven Kandarian continues to ignore the abandoned chimp crisis created by the New York Blood Center (NYBC), an organization that the company bankrolls.  Dozens of activists, therefore, took the campaign to his home in Summit, NJ, an exclusive suburb of NYC, for the second time since May 2015.

Activists march through Summit, NJ, the home of MetLife's CEO.

Activists march through Summit, NJ, to the home of MetLife CEO Steven Kandarian.

Activists marched from Summit’s train station to Kandarian’s home and back, all the while engaging with and distributing leaflets to Mandarin’s neighbors and other Summit residents. While some were annoyed by the presence of activists in a quiet suburb, others were eager to learn about the issue.

Activists protest in Summit, NJ, the home of MetLife's CEO.

Activists protest in Summit, NJ, the home of MetLife’s CEO.

“We are sorry that it has come to the point that we have to show up on Kandarian’s doorstep,” said Donny Moss, one of the organizers. “We are also genuinely confused about why a company that prides itself on corporate social responsibility is not only turning a blind eye to an atrocity being committed by an organization that it supports but also refusing to publicly address the crisis in spite of pleas by thousands of people worldwide.”

Activists protest at the home of MetLife's CEO, Steven Mandarin.

Activists protest at the home of MetLife’s CEO, Steven Mandarin.

“Tap Into Summit,” a local news outlet, reported on the protest both before and after.

The protest was covered by "Tap into Summit," a local news outlet.

The protest was covered by “Tap into Summit,” a local news outlet.

In November, 2015, primatologist Bob Ingersoll traveled from San Francisco to NYC to hand-deliver a petition to MetLife asking the company to cut its support of NYBC until the organization reinstates promised funding for its former lab chimps. While a representative from MetLife did collect the petitions from Mr. Ingersoll in the lobby, neither she nor anyone else from the company responded to him.

Primatologist Bob Ingersoll delivers petitions to a MetLife representative.

Primatologist Bob Ingersoll delivers petitions to a MetLife representative.

On April 26, activists staged a 30-minute disruption in the lobby of the MetLife building during rush hour. Two weeks later, they protested at the New Jersey home of MetLife CEO Steven Kandarian. On June 14, activists held a demonstration at MetLife’s annual shareholders meeting. To date, MetLife has ignored all of the protests and the efforts to open a dialog regarding the chimpanzee crisis.

Activists stage a disruption in the MetLife building's lobby.

Activists stage a disruption in the MetLife building’s lobby.

In May, 2015, the NY Times reported that NYBC had “withdrawn all funding for them [the chimps],” leaving them  to die of starvation and thirst. In order to keep the chimps alive, Liberians who had been employed by the blood center to deliver food and water, began to care for them on a volunteer basis. With virtually no resources and burdened by the Ebola outbreak in Liberia, these volunteers kept the chimpanzees alive until an HSUS-led coalition of over 30 animal conservation groups raised funds from the public to pay for the chimps’ care on an emergency basis.

chimpanzees abandoned by the NY Blood Center

Chimpanzees in Liberia abandoned by the NY Blood Center

The New York Blood Center, which has earned an estimated $500 million in royalties off of the research conducted on the chimpanzees, has publicly stated that it has no “contractual obligation” to pay for the chimps’ food and water and has shifted the financial burden of caring for their captive chimp population to the animal welfare community.

chimpanzees abandoned by the NY Blood Center receive food from a local volunteer

A Liberian volunteer distributes food to chimps abandoned by the NY Blood Center

Your Turn

Use the tweet sheet to contact MetLife, NYBC and their stakeholders.

Sign the Care2 petition to MetLife, NYBC’s largest corporate donor.

Join the Facebook page: New York Blood Center: Do the Right Thing to stay apprised of news and to participate in online actions to pressure NYBC board members to fulfill their promise to provide lifelong care to their laboratory chimps.

Follow TheirTurn on Twitter, and follow “Save NYBC Chimps”on Instagram and Twitter.



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TheirTurn.net Comments

  1. Linda Rolf says:

    Thank you for continuing to demand justice for the 67 abandoned NYBC chimps.

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