The greyhound racing ban in New South Wales, which was announced by Premier Mike Baird early last month after an inquiry into the industry, is now officially law – it sailed through Parliament last night, passing with 49 votes to 30.
Debate persisted overnight as Labor MPs expressed their opposition to the plan. “With this legislation he’s breaking the hearts of thousands of good men and women across this state,” said Leader of the Opposition Luke Foley.
“An entire industry should not be outlawed, declared illegal, unless all reasonable efforts have genuinely been made to regulate its anti-social features.”
Some Nationals MPs also had concerns about the bill, but the wide Coalition majority meant that it passed easily regardless.
“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,” Mr Baird said in a statement.
The focus is now on providing support to communities who will be affected by the industry, including many regional communities which have in the past relied on greyhound racing for income and jobs.
‘We’re committed to leaving no-one behind in the transition to an orderly and humane industry closure and we’ll announce this package, which will include financial assistance, in coming months,’ said Deputy Premier and Racing Minister Troy Grant.
So it’s done. A good decision with a fair bit of collateral – it’ll be a test for Baird to see if he can balance it.
Source: Sky News.
Photo: Getty Images / Vince Caligiuri.