Captive Primate Safety Act

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The Captive Primate Safety Act (H.R. 2964) was a bill introduced in the United States House of Representatives by Rep. Eddie Johnson on July 10, 2007.[1] The legislation, had it been enacted, would have modified the Lacey Act Amendments of 1981 to treat nonhuman primates as prohibited wildlife species, allowing exemptions for zoos and research facilities. The bill was passed by the House of Representatives but never received a floor vote in the United States Senate.

The bill was reintroduced by Rep. Mark Kirk[2] in February 2009 following the widely publicized mauling of Charla Nash by a pet chimpanzee.[3]

Rep. Rob Bishop argued against the bill during the floor debate, noting it would cost $4 million annually and do nothing directly to prevent chimpanzee attacks on humans; he also noted such attacks are relatively rare.[4] Twenty states and the District of Columbia already had laws banning primates as pets.[5] On February 23, the House voted 323 to 95 in favor of the bill. The House version would exempt monkey helpers.[4]


  1. ^ "H.R. 2964 [110th]: Captive Primate Safety Act". Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  2. ^ "Ben Smith's Blog: The Primate Act of '09". Politico.Com. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  3. ^ "Topic Galleries". Archived from the original on 2009-02-26. Retrieved 2010-07-26. 
  4. ^ a b Peter Urban, House approves primate pet ban, Connecticut Post, February 24, 2009. Retrieved February 24, 2009.
  5. ^ House tightens restrictions on chimps as pets Archived February 27, 2009, at the Wayback Machine., USA TODAY, February 24, 2009. Retrieved February 24, 2009.