RSPCA Qld has welcomed the initial recommendations handed down by Commission of Inquiry set up to investigate the Greyhound Racing Industry.
“They will mean the industry will be infinitely more accountable than it has been in the past and for the first time some realistic solutions have been recommended that could help alleviate the appalling wastage of animals who either don’t make the grade or have retired,” said RSPCA Qld CEO Mark Townend.
The Commission said that the industry’s current operational model was flawed and recommended an alternative model where the commercial and integrity aspects of the industry were completely separated. A new Queensland Racing Integrity Commission (QRIC) would be entirely focussed on ensuring integrity within the industry with the aim of restoring public confidence.
The Commission also recommended that the breeding incentive program, QGreys, be discontinued and that the money currently funding that program be redirected to the Greyhound Adoption Program (GAP) or similar animal welfare initiative.
“What’s also interesting is it recommended that the first owner be required to be responsible for the cost of the care of the dog until suitable arrangements can be made for its ongoing welfare. Plus, if they owner defaults then the cost would be borne by the industry from a fund established for such purposes,” continued Mr Townend.
Another suggestion is that a lower class of racing be made available for greyhounds which for a variety of reasons may not be competitive and thus forced into retirement from the industry. If successful this would extend the racing career of many greyhounds and ease the burden of numbers that need rehoming.
“We certainly commend the Government for acting quickly and being proactive. The results from the Police RSPCA Qld task force are disturbing and the Commission of Inquiry has proved that the industry needs a fairly drastic overhaul.”