Groups agree Oregon primates will stay together at sanctuary
Seven chimps will be able to stay together under the care of new management of an Oregon-based sanctuary. The chimps will now be under the supervision of the newly formed nonprofit Freedom for Great Apes at the Tumalo-based sanctuary previously managed by Chimps Inc.
The resolution was reached after Primarily Primates Inc, Friends of Animals’ Texas-based sanctuary, sued Chimps Inc. to prevent two of the primates from being moved from the Tumalo-based sanctuary to a research lab in Des Moines, Iowa.
The two chimps, Emma and Jackson, had been sent to Tumalo in 2006 after PPI was temporarily closed following allegations of animal neglect and misuse of funds. Friends of Animals took over management and oversight of the 78-acre PPI in 2007. In a 2008 settlement Chimps Inc. agreed to secure permanent sanctuary for Emma and Jackson in perpetuity and to give PPI rights to bring the two chimps back to PPI if Chimps Inc. dissolved or needed to find a home for them.
Emma and Jackson will now be able to stay in Oregon with the other primates. Emma and Jackson were raised as pets and were the youngest residents at PPI when they arrived. Jackson, now 18, and Emma, 17, have been together for more than a decade at the Tumalo sanctuary.
“Friends of Animals was prepared to take in all the seven chimps at its sanctuary in Texas if necessary, but we are so glad that Emma and Jackson and the other primates who have been at the sanctuary in Tumalo for 12 years will continue to stay together and have the freedom and privilege of following their own interests and choosing how to spend their time and days as sanctuary residents,’’ said Friends of Animals President Priscilla Feral.
Freedom for Great Apes has signed a long-term lease with the owner of the property in Tumalo, Lesley Day, who had stepped down as president of Chimps Inc, in 2017 but owns the sanctuary property.
“I would like to thank all the staff and volunteers at Chimps Inc. for their great work over the last 24 years,’’ said Day, “and express my appreciation to the amazing team at Freedom for Great Apes for stepping up to carry on the vital mission of giving these chimpanzees a safe and comfortable place to spend the rest of their lives together.”
Pictures of Emma and Jackson from Chimps Inc.