Green TD calls for complete coursing ban
15 June 2006
The Green Party's Sport and Tourism spokesperson has called for a complete ban on hare coursing. Paul Gogarty, the party's TD for Dublin Mid-West, said: "The greyhound industry is covered in a cloud of cruelty and is in urgent need of reform."
A Green Party statement detailing Mr Gogarty's opposition to coursing appears below.
Gogarty calls for complete ban on hare coursing
Green Party spokesperson on Arts, Sport and Tourism Paul Gogarty TD has called for a ban on all hare coursing, saying that the greyhound industry is covered in a cloud of cruelty and is in urgent need of reform. According to Deputy Gogarty, drag coursing, which involves the use of a mechanical bait, could and should replace the use of live hares.
Speaking in relation to a Dáil debate on Greyhound Doping today, the Green Party spokesperson said: "Hare coursing involves cruelty to both hares and dogs. This has to stop. I am not anti-greyhound racing, but an industry that knowingly engages in animal cruelty for profit is not one that should be allowed operate in such a fashion.
"Statistics show that 75 per cent of people living in the countryside and 90 per cent of city dwellers oppose hare coursing. So why are our legislators ignoring this fact? Perhaps this is because many of our elites own greyhounds, including politicians from several parties. During today's debate a considerable number of contributors admitted to owning a greyhound; making it hard for many to take a balanced view of the industry.
"Do these parliamentary colleagues condone the stress caused to hares that are captured for up to six weeks? Do they condone the deaths from stress and maulings that still occur, even with muzzles on the greyhounds? What about the illegal bloodings that still go on and the putting down of greyhounds that have outlived their economic usefulness? Is there not an element of hypocrisy involved?"
Deputy Gogarty also questioned the continuation of the current high levels of funding for the dog and horse racing industries.
"This is an industry that needs to change. It can change and I would support a cruelty-free greyhound racing sector. It provides a social outlet for people in communities across the country, however; it does not make people fitter and healthier from a physical or spiritual point of view. This is why I am appalled that 37 per cent of all Government funding on Sport goes to the horse and greyhound racing industry.
"It is a sickening statistic considering there are clubs around the country crying out for funding - clubs that involve people in active participation in sport. It is these clubs that should be the priorities for Government; not profitable industries that have more to do with gambling than exercise," concluded Deputy Gogarty.
Please contact Environment Minister, Dick Roche, and demand an end to coursing in Ireland. Tell the Minister that hares should be allowed to live free from the cruelty of coursing. Please also contact your local TDs and urge them to work for an end to coursing and all blood sports.
Minister Dick Roche
Tel: +353 (0)1-8882403
Write to your TD at:
Write to your Senator at:
For the names and contact details of politicians, please visit the Irish Government Website at www.irlgov.ie.
Photos and Video: Coursing Cruelty