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    Greyhound Racing NSW Defends Record Amid Rising Criticisms
Greyhound Racing NSW Defends Record Amid Rising Criticisms
Greyhound. Source: punters.com.au

Greyhound Racing NSW Defends Record Amid Rising Criticisms

Greyhound Racing NSW (GRNSW) has defended its record amid rising criticisms, emphasising its “zero unnecessary euthanasia” policy and a record low number of track deaths as major achievements for the year. Sydney Morning Herald, and some regional newspapers, the body highlighted that 22 greyhounds died or were euthanised at racetracks in 2023-24, a significant decrease from 66 in 2022-23 and 140 in 2017-18.

Animal Justice Party MP Emma Hurst criticised the advertisement, stating that claiming no "unnecessary" deaths ignores the tragedy of greyhounds killed by the industry. According to the Greyhound Welfare and Integrity Commission (GWIC), injury rates have reached their highest since independent reporting began in 2018, with over 40 injuries per 1,000 race starts in the first three-quarters of 2023-24, compared to fewer than 30 in 2020-21. Advocacy group Coalition for the Protection of Greyhounds reported 4,321 injuries in 2023-24, up from 3,988 in 2022-23.

Hurst emphasised that over 2,000 greyhounds have been injured in NSW this year, more than anywhere else in the country. The advertisement did not detail injury rates but noted “improved safety and welfare” of dogs and “record investment in track safety.”

Defending its record, a GRNSW spokesperson pointed to a 67% reduction in track mortality rates over the past year and highlighted the economic benefits the industry brings to the state. The spokesperson stressed the importance of publicly acknowledging significant milestones and achievements for the benefit of the community and the thousands of industry participants.

Hurst, calling for an upper house inquiry into the sector, stated that Harris’s show cause notice to the board exposes the extent of the issues within the greyhound racing industry but asserted that more needs to be done. She mentioned that her office is drafting legislation to give the minister further powers over the industry, including the authority to remove the GRNSW chief.

On Wednesday, Harris affirmed the government’s commitment to supporting a “competitive, responsible and sustainable” greyhound racing industry with the highest standards of animal welfare.

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