Deakin University Animal Ethics Committee (AEC)
Deakin University has two Animal Ethics Committee's as follows:
- Animal Ethics Committee Geelong (AECG)
- Animal Ethics Committee Burwood (AECB)
Each Committee will function independently, conducting business separately and in accordance with the responsibilities under Section 2.3 of the Code. The AEC's Term of Reference, composition, and operating procedures are determined by Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and the Code.
The legislative requirements specify that an Animal Ethics Committee must verify that the use of the animals adhere to the principles and guidelines described in the Code. The AEC considers applications for compliance with legislative requirements.
The purpose of the Code is to ensure the ethical use and humane care of animals used for scientific purposes. Each person involved in the care and use of animals for scientific purposes must consider the governing principles when applying the Code to their specific circumstance.
Governing principles: :
- 1.1 Respect for animals must underpin all decisions and actions involving the care and use of animals for scientific purposes. This respect is demonstrated by:
- using animals only when it is justified
- supporting the wellbeing of the animals involved
- avoiding or minimising harm, including pain and distress, to those animals
- applying high standards of scientific integrity
- applying Replacement, Reduction and Refinement (the 3Rs) at all stages of animal care and use:
- the Replacement of animals with other methods
- the Reduction in the number of animals used
- the Refinement of techniques used to minimise the adverse impact on animals
- knowing and accepting one’s responsibilities.
- 1.2 The care and use of animals for scientific purposes must be subject to ethical review.
- 1.3 A judgement as to whether a proposed use of animals is ethically acceptable must be based on information that demonstrates the principles in Clause 1.1, and must balance whether the potential effects on the wellbeing of the animals involved is justified by the potential benefits.
- 1.4 The obligation to respect animals, and the responsibilities associated with this obligation, apply throughout the animal’s lifetime, including acquisition, transport, breeding, housing, husbandry, use of the animal in a project, and provisions for the animal at the conclusion of their use.
In accordance with the Code, the Deakin University AEC must composed of a Chair, Veterinarian (Category A), Research Scientist (Category B), Animal Welfare Representative (Category C) Independent Lay member (Category D) and a Secretary.