The Nonhuman Rights Prokect works to secure legally recognized fundamental rights for nonhuman animals through litigation, advocacy, and education.
-To change the common law status of great apes, elephants, dolphins, and whales from mere “things,” which lack the capacity to possess any legal right, to “legal persons,” who possess such fundamental rights as bodily liberty and bodily integrity.
-To draw on the common law and evolving standards of morality, scientific discovery, and human experience to consider other qualities that may be sufficient for recognition of nonhuman animals’ legal personhood and fundamental rights.
-To develop local, national, and global issue-oriented grassroots campaigns to promote recognition of nonhuman animals as beings worthy of moral and legal consideration and with their own inherent interests in freedom from captivity, participation in a community of other members of their species, and the protection of their natural habitats.
-To build a broad-based coalition of organizations and individuals to secure legally recognized fundamental rights for nonhuman animals.
-To foster understanding of the social, historical, political, and legal justice of our arguments and the scientific discovery of other species’ cognitive and emotional complexity that informs them.