Jumps Racing

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS (15:04): I seek leave to make a brief explanation before addressing a question to the minister representing the Minister for Environment and Water on the topic of prevention of cruelty to animals.

Leave granted.

The Hon. T.A. FRANKS: Today is the Horses' Birthday in the Southern Hemisphere: 1 August is the date. It is not a happy birthday for those horses who are subjected to the practice of jumps racing. It only exists in the states of Victoria and South Australia in Australia, and has indeed been banned for its cruelty in New South Wales. Jumps racing is found to be 19 times more deadly than flats racing.

A select committee, of course, has given the industry a three-year reprieve to clean up its act, something the RSPCA (the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) disputes is possible. Previously, the Law Society has supported a bill that I have had before this place by saying that banning jumps racing would clarify the law, but they believe that already jumps racing contravenes the law and is cruelty to animals under our Animal Welfare Act.

My question to the minister representing the minister is: will the Minister for Environment and Water, with carriage of the Animal Welfare Act, ensure that amendments are made to the Animal Welfare Act to allow the RSPCA to act to prevent cruelty, not just to address cruelty where it happens, and give the horses the birthday present they need of many happy returns next year?

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