Green Party MP and animal welfare spokesperson Mojo Mathers is proud and honoured to be one of this year’s recipients of the prestigious Lush Prize.
The Lush Prize, which is funded by international cosmetics company Lush, recognises people working to end chemical testing on animals. The winners were chosen by an international panel of experts from 51 shortlisted science teams, organisations and individual researchers, with Ms Mathers being recognised for her work in leading the campaign to end the testing of cosmetics products on animals in New Zealand.
The winners of Lush Prize are awarded a share of just over NZ$1 million, and will be honoured at a ceremony in London on Friday, November 20 (Ms Mathers declined the financial element of her prize, which enabled an additional research prize to be awarded).
“I feel extremely proud to have won this award, and it is very exciting to be here in London to receive it,” said Ms Mathers.
“Being part of the campaign to get the Government to ban the testing of cosmetics on animals in New Zealand has been one of the highlights of my political career so far.
“I’m extremely proud of the thousands of New Zealanders who signed petitions, attended rallies and sent emails to let the Government know that the testing of cosmetics on animals is completely abhorrent.
"I also want to acknowledge the significant contributions from many organisations, both local and international, to this campaign including NZAVS, SAFE, HSI and others. This was a real team effort by all parties.
“Together, we got the Government to act to protect animals and to protect our international reputation.
“No animal should have to suffer just so we can have a new shampoo or cosmetic product on supermarket shelves and while it took the Government a while to realise that, I’m glad they finally did.
“The time was right for New Zealand to ban these cruel tests as so many countries around the world had already brought in similar bans.
“This is a very humbling experience – the other award winners are all doing amazing work all over the world, with the goal of ending animal suffering.
“There is still a lot of work to be done in New Zealand and around the world for animal rights, and I’m going to keep leading from the front on these issues,” said Ms Mathers.