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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 13 Hansard (Tuesday, 30 November 2021) . . Page.. 3836 ..


The Greens want to abolish the cruel and inhumane use of animals for sport, recreation and entertainment.

What does that mean, exactly? What does that mean? I think the meaning is very clear, particularly considering that this statement was attached to a “Nup to the cup” graphic. This was a statement from the minister overseeing the Gambling and Racing Commission indicating that he and his party are on a mission to ban horseracing.

Everyone involved in the sport of horseracing should be made aware of this sentiment. Furthermore, I think it has much more far-reaching consequences. The minister’s statement was quite broad. He said:

The Greens want to abolish the cruel and inhumane use of animals for sport, recreation and entertainment.

Canberrans who enjoy the pursuits of pony club, all equestrian sports, flyball and all dog clubs have a right to be very concerned about what might be to come. In the land of the Greens, I am sure the Canberra Show would be animal free. It is up to the minister to clarify his statement at some stage. If he chooses not to, he can be assured that I will clarify it for him.

How can a member who has stated that he wants to see an end to horseracing be the minister overseeing the Gambling and Racing Commission? I can hear the minister saying, “Equestrian would not be a problem, because it is only pursuits with prize money involved.” I point the minister to the fact that there is $40,000 up for grabs in the equestrian ring at the show in February. I can hear the minister saying, “No, it is because there is gambling.” Is it about animal welfare or is it about gambling harm? You cannot have it both ways; it is about one or the other.

I commend the recently released review into equine welfare by the ACT Racing Club. It is abundantly clear that our race club here in Canberra are a leading light in animal welfare. It is tough for them, because this is the only jurisdiction in the nation where a percentage of the point-of-consumption gaming tax does not go back to the racing codes. In Tasmania, 80 per cent of that tax goes back to the racing code. Here, it all goes to general revenue, even though a large percentage of it comes from betting on greyhound racing. Despite that ongoing reduction in income in real terms, our racing club are not cutting corners in the animal welfare space. They should be commended for that and not condemned in the way that this minister has done publicly.

MR RATTENBURY (Kurrajong) (11.38): I rise to very briefly note that Mr Parton may wish to consult the admin arrangements, from which he will note that I am not the minister responsible for racing in the ACT.

Proposed expenditure agreed to.

Public Trustee and Guardian—Part 1.21.

MR CAIN (Ginninderra) (11.39): I want to air something that has been raised before, and certainly it was raised during the estimates: for me, it is a puzzle why the Public


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