The Joint Working Group (JWG) has provided its final report to Greyhound Racing (GRNSW) Chief Executive Paul Newson. The report aims to assist in providing options and recommended actions to drive reform in the NSW greyhound racing industry.
The report makes 20 recommendations concerning issues around animal welfare, integrity, racing, clubs, governance and industry sustainability.
Key among the recommendations was for the expansion of greyhound and participant registration to cover the entire lifecycle of a greyhound.
The JWG also believes GRNSW should undertake further analysis of the Centre of Excellence club concept by identifying the optimum number of race meetings, and type, required to be supported by the track network as well as the specific features of a Centre of Excellence.
The JWG also provides recommendations in the report on best practice grading systems aimed at improving animal welfare outcomes in the industry. It also provides suggestions as to practical steps to be taken to address the over-production and unnecessary euthanasia of greyhounds.
GRNSW General Manager, Industry Reform Wayne Billett, who was a member of the JWG, said the recommendations outlined in the final report put animal welfare at the centre of all aspects of the sport.
The recommendations also supported by robust governance measures and effective regulation which would be underpinned by effective strategies to ensure the financial sustainability of the greyhound racing industry into the future, Mr Billett added.
Mr Billett said the JWG members acknowledge that many of the recommendations outlined in the report will require significant investment.
“The JWG understand and expects that the priority for GRNSW’s finances must be directed towards greyhound welfare and regulation. However, the JWG believes there is also a need to improve the quality of NSW greyhound racing tracks, and to raise prizemoney levels towards those available in Victoria and Queensland.”
Mr Billett thanked all stakeholders who provided submissions and presented to the Joint Working Group, as well as his fellow representatives on the JWG.
GRNSW will now consider the recommendations as it continues the development of the strategic approach for the NSW greyhound racing industry, with a further round of consultation to be embarked on by senior management in the coming weeks.