Decatur County residents protest Safer Human Medicine’s attempts to locate in Bainbridge


Protesters are calling on city officials to take more actions to cancel out the primate deal. Court documents show the company looks to validate the revenue bond, tax abatements and project agreement. Arguing that SHM has satisfied their end of the deal. Watch the story to hear from protesters and see what’s next for the project.

BROADCAST TRANSCRIPT:

Neighbors opposing Safer Human Medicine’s primate breeding company are hitting the streets to share their message.

“I just need more people to know what’s going on, because without them we can only do so much,” said Yverna Merritt, demonstrator and Attapulgus resident.

Protestors are calling on city officials to take more actions to cancel out the primate deal.

“They have shown us a little but it [primate deal] has not stopped, said LeeAnn Elkins, demonstrator and Bainbridge resident.

Elkins is one of the thousands of neighbors standing up against a primate breeding facility making its way to Bainbridge.

“I love this town. I don’t think people are informed enough about who these people are, according to Elkins.

Neighbors have questioned the leaders behind Safer Human Medicine but are ultimately calling for local officials to, “vote “no” like the other entities did, said Merritt.

On February 13, Safer Human Medicine filed a lawsuit against the Decatur County-Bainbridge Industrial Authority. Court documents show the company looks to validate the revenue bond, tax abatements and project agreement.

They’re arguing that SHM has satisfied their end of the deal.

“I hope they can do what they can to wipe them out, and end it just to terminate the whole project, said Merritt.

Earlier this month, an executive with Safer Human Medicine told me there were no plans to stop the project.

“We actually fell in love with Bainbridge. There’s just been a lot of misinformation that’s been put out,” said Jim Harkness, chief executive officer, Safer Human Medicine.

Now, Safer Human Medicine is alleging the county’s development authority has breached the contract and project agreements.

A spokesperson with the city tells me there are three separate lawsuits at this time only one involves the city.

Neighbors are standing together when it comes to pushing back against the monkey farm.

“I have to give thanks to the community. I have never seen such unity in my life, said Merritt.

Executive director for the Development Authority, Rick McCaskill says it’s all up to the lawyers not and could not comment any further.

The community is invited to Tuesday’s city council meeting at 6:30 p.m.

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