After months of debate in parliament and in public, greyhound racing has officially been banned in New South Wales.
Last night, NSW premier Mike Baird lead a successful campaign to ban the industry after an investigation found up to 68,000 greyhounds were killed as “wastage” in the past 12 years.
The innocent animals were considered “too slow to pay their way or were unsuitable for racing”.
The vote was passed 48 to 35 and now there is talk about the ban being issued across the entire country.
It is a subject that is diving many, with some saying the industry is rampant with animal cruelty and needs to be shut down and others saying a total ban would ruin the lives of hundreds of people.
Mr Baird said he was happy the vote had passed, but Opposition leader Luke Foley put up a huge fight standing for two hours to speak against the shutdown.
“I am pleased the Parliament has strongly supported the Government’s decision, because it is the right one, even though it has been a difficult one,” said Premier Mike Baird.
“The bill is the direct consequence of the Special Commission, which found compelling evidence of systemic animal cruelty in greyhound racing and concluded there was a culture of cover-up that gave no comfort to those who hoped it could be reformed.”
But Mr Foley said Mr Baird “is breaking the hearts of thousands of good men and women across the state.”
“Let’s throw the book at the bad people in the industry with life bans and prison sentences for those found guilty of animal cruelty but let’s not destroy an entire industry and way of life,” he said.
“Regional and rural NSW has been let down by a National Party which has done little more than act as a lickspittle for a North Shore Liberal Premier.
“There are thousands of good and honest people in the greyhound industry that will have their livelihoods destroyed by this Liberal-National Government.”
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