Animal Protection > Worldwide Actions > United Kingdom

Vodafone vs. ALF

Vodafone has been caught up in protests against the university's construction of a new 20million pounds animal research laboratory after it emerged that the firm had given money to the university. The mobile phone firm has accused animal rights extremists of putting the lives of its customers in danger with a campaign to sabotage its phone masts. In a letter to Vodafone, the ALF warned that there would be repercussions if the company did not stop funding university research.

However, the company refused to such an undertaking. The police have launched an investigation into seven attacks, one of which was claimed by the Animal Liberation Front. Activists have boasted that they have cut wiring, snapped ventilation blades and scrawled messages on the masts. One message left read "No Oxford Animal Lab - ALF".

The donations, totaling just under given by The Vodafone Group Foundation and Vodafone UK Foundation, were made to the university's engineering science department. The funded project investigated the use of mobile technology to enable remote monitoring of patients' illness, and thus improve patients' quality of life.

The telemedicine projects, supported by a donation from the Vodafone Group Foundation, included a trial for remotely monitoring the blood  sugar level of Diabetes sufferers to have their blood sugar levels and using mobile technology to monitor the side effects of chemotherapy.

The animal rights group Pigeon Control Advisory Service UK (PiCAS UK), issued a press release in December 2005 claiming that, according to Oxford University records, the Vodafone Group Foundation, funded by global Vodafone outlets including Vodafone UK, donated 184,494.14 pounds to Oxford University in 2003. PiCAS UK called this an "absolute disgrace", claiming the money could be used to fund the building of the lab.

full story: vodafone_masts_suffer_alf_vandalism

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