A huge legal wall separates humans from all other animals. On one side of the wall sit humans who are considered legal ‘persons’ and are bearers of a number of legal rights. Nonhuman animals are on the wrong side of the wall where they are considered mere ‘things’, unable to possess any legal rights such as the right to freedom from captivity or torture.
The Nonhuman Rights Project (NhRP) is challenging this convention, arguing that the legal division between humans and nonhuman animals is indiscriminate and irrational. Rather than being pre-determined by species, NhRP claim that the granting of legal personhood should be based on cognitive ability – human or otherwise.
On this basis, the NhRP have embarked on three strategic lawsuits in New York State in an attempt to liberate four chimpanzees held in wrongful captivity.
The 2015 Voiceless Animal Law Lecture Series will explore NhRP’s work to revolutionise the way the law considers nonhuman animals.
To present this topic Voiceless is proud to welcome the President of NhRP Professor Steven Wise as keynote speaker.
The lecture series will take place at nine locations during April and May 2015. The lecture series is open to the public and free to attend. Register via the Voiceless website.