O’Connor stands by call for greyhounds ban

GREENS leader Cassy O’Connor says she doesn’t regret publicly calling for a ban on greyhound racing, despite it getting her sacked from heading up a committee investigating the industry.

Ms O’Connor has been removed as the chairwoman of a joint house committee examining the state’s greyhound racing industry.

The committee voted to replace Ms O’Connor after she spoke in favour of abolishing the industry at a rally in Hobart earlier this month.

She will be replaced by Elwick independent MLC Adriana Taylor.

‘‘I don’t think anyone who has been paying attention for the last year would be surprised by anything I said at that rally,’’ Ms O’Connor said.

‘‘I didn’t speak on behalf of the committee and I stuck to the facts – which is that in Tasmania more than half of the greyhounds born never make it to the track.

‘‘It is an industry which is cruel,’’ she said.

Ms O’Connor said the new chairwoman, Mrs Taylor, would be drafting a new set of findings and recommendations.

She said she expected to submit a dissenting report.

Ms O’Connor set up the inquiry after the ABC’s Four Corners program revealed live baiting had been used to train greyhounds interstate.

She will remain a member of the committee, which will hand down its report on March 31.

Newly sworn in Racing Minister Adam Brooks said the government cared for greyhounds but also supported the racing industry.

Mr Brooks said he would not pre-empt the findings of the inquiry.

‘‘As a government we are always open to improving any industry, but that will be done in consultation with the industry itself,’’ Mr Brooks said.

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