From the Collective Liberation Conference:
Last weekend, the No New Animal Lab campaign had a strong presence at the Collective Liberation Conference in Long Beach, CA. In addition to the campaign having a table, No New Animal Lab organizers spoke on a panel about the effectiveness of pressure campaigns with Jake Conroy and Josh Harper of the SHAC7 as well as gave a presentation dedicated to explaining the strategy of the No New Animal Lab campaign, the inspiration it's having on the animal liberation movement, and encouraging people to get involved. The speakers pushed people to believe that we can win this campaign and to act with that belief; if we don't, animals will be buried underground in the new lab. At every moment, animals in labs are resisting--they kick, they bite, they scream--and we can't let more animals be sentenced to that fate and have not fought with the desperation and urgency that they need us to.
Following the conference, attendees gathered for a home demo at the house of Tom Neary, Vice President of Business Development at Skanska USA Building Inc. Before the protest started, activists knocked on the door of his house. His wife answered and told them that Tom was out of town visiting family in Nebraska, and that he had stopped working at Skanska two days before because he'd been fired...yet she said she had no way to prove that. Suspicious of the story, the activists asked more questions until Tom's wife offered to call him. An activist attempted to have a polite conversation with Tom over the phone about his position at Skanska and the No New Animal Lab campaign, but he was not polite. He told her that she needed to get off his property and that he was calling the police. She told him that she was not on his property but on a public sidewalk and had been having a polite conversation with his wife. Rather than listening and engaging in conversation, Tom again told her that he was calling the police and hung up on her. At that moment, seeing Tom shut down an attempt at polite and productive communication, other activists announced, "The demo is on!"
Activists spoke out and chanted through bullhorns, and the sounds spread through the neighborhood. People came pouring out of their houses, curious to see what was happening. Many of the neighbors engaged in conversation with activists and took information. After making the neighborhood fully aware of Skanska's plans to build a new animal lab, the activists left the neighborhood with promises to be back unless Skanska cuts their contract for the lab.
Skanska executives across the country should take note: activists are bringing the message of No New Animal Lab to front doors everywhere...who's door will be next?