Source: MIL-OSI Submissions
Source: SAFE For Animals
Greyhound Racing Zealand today announced that racing at Hatrick Raceway in Whanganui is indefinitely suspended, pending an independent assessment due to safety concerns.
This announcement follows three races where multiple injuries occurred over three shocking races over the last week. Since 15 September 2021, 11 dogs have been injured.
SAFE called for races to be suspended and investigated at Hatrick Raceway in January 2021 following a deadly summer at the track. Five dogs were killed during a four week period.
SAFE spokesperson Will Appelbe is satisfied races were suspended, however it should have happened much sooner.
“This is a good result, but it’s too late for the countless dogs who have already been injured and killed at the Whanganui track this year.”
“It’s appalling that the GRNZ has waited nine months to take action at this track, especially given the heightened scrutiny of the industry.”
Since SAFE first called for the closure of the Whanganui track in January 2021, 196 dogs have been injured and a further four dogs were killed.
Racing Minister Grant Robertson recently put the greyhound racing industry formally on notice following the release of the 2021 greyhound racing review. In this review, Sir Bruce Robertson reiterated that by its nature, greyhound racing is inherently dangerous. This was a point also made in the 2017 Hansen Report.
“We hope this track is permanently closed to spare any more dogs from further suffering. Ultimately though, until the Government bans greyhound racing, dogs like the ones raced in Whanganui will continue to suffer.”
SAFE is New Zealand’s leading animal rights organisation.
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– Racing Minister Grant Robertson has stated there are three fundamental issues that still need to be addressed; data recording, transparency of all activities, and animal welfare generally. He has tasked the Racing Integrity board to identify a specific set of indicators over each of these areas that will be used to assess the industry’s progress, reporting back to the Minister before the end of 2022.
– Last month, Labour MP Priyanca Radhakrishnan accepted The Greyhound Protection League of New Zealand’s 37,700 signature-strong petition, calling for a ban on greyhound racing in New Zealand. SAFE had been supporting the petition since November 2020.
– Greyhound racing is legal in only seven countries. A ban in the Australian Capital Territory came into force in April 2018, followed by a ban in Florida, USA, in November 2018. Since Florida is home to 11 of the USA’s 17 active dog tracks, this is a signal that greyhound racing will soon become a thing of the past in the United States.