Media Releases

LAW Exposes Air Canada Monkey Business

A legal opinion from Lawyers for Animal Welfare (LAW) has exposed Air Canada claims that it is unable to stop shipping animals for research as false.

Air Canada has repeatedly claimed that it has no choice but to ship animals destined for cruel experimentation. Most recently, an August 5 Montreal Gazette article, available HERE, quoted an Air Canada representative as saying that the airline is “required by law to carry this type of cargo even though we tried to refuse it”.

But LAW’s legal opinion, available HERE, shows that Air Canada is within its rights to stop such shipments simply by changing the wording of its cargo tariff.

“It’s time for Air Canada to stop trying to fool the public and do the right thing by ending the cruel shipment of animals destined for experimentation” said Camille Labchuck, Campaign Manager at Lawyers for Animal Welfare (LAW).

Using the opinion Humane Society International/Canada and the Animal Alliance of Canada have issued a call for Air Canada to reject shipments of animals for research, toxicity testing, or other harmful laboratory experimentation––a policy which has already been adopted by United Airlines, British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and other major airlines.

Air Canada was criticized in January when animal protection groups exposed a shipment of dozens of monkeys aboard an Air Canada flight from China destined for laboratories in Quebec.

In the early 1990s, Air Canada refused to ship monkeys for research, but a 1998 ruling by the Canadian Transportation Authority forced the airline to abandon that decision based on the wording of its cargo tariff.

A copy of LAW’s legal opinion was submitted to Air Canada CEO Calin Rovinescu on July 8 requesting a response within 30 days. To date, no response has been received.

Lawyers for Animal Welfare (LAW) is an incorporated Registered Charity dedicated to advancing public knowledge of animal practices and preventing the abuse and killing of animals through the enforcement of existing laws.

Tax deductible donations can be made on the website using credit card or PayPal at: or by contacting the organization to make alternative arrangements.

For more information contact LAW at: info AT