Australian Greens Animal Welfare Spokesperson, Senator Mehreen Faruqi, has welcomed the Senate Inquiry report calling on the Federal Government to establish a horse traceability scheme. Senator Faruqi established the inquiry in February and has been a leading voice for the establishment of a register to protect horses.
The report has called for the establishment of a national working group to work towards implementing a National Horse Traceability Register.
Senator Faruqi said:
“Australians saw horrific scenes of cruelty and slaughter of race horses and were outraged. This register is the beginning of much-needed transparency in the racing industry. We need to track horses throughout their lives so the industry has no more excuses for not ensuring every horse has a dignified retirement.
“I established the inquiry into a national horse traceability register to hear from all parties on how we can better protect all horses from sickness, neglect and cruelty. We now have a very compelling case for a register.
“It is completely unprecedented to have so many stakeholders and groups in favour of the need to establish a national horse traceability register. Animal welfare groups, the racing industry and the broader horse industry all overwhelmingly support a register. We just need national leadership from the Government to make it happen.
“There is a huge gap in biosecurity for horses in this country. It is pretty shocking to think that we don’t even know how many horses there are in Australia. We heard evidence that ten years on from the Equine Influenza breakout of 2007, which cost billions of dollars, we are effectively flying blind still. That’s simply unacceptable.
“I wish to acknowledge and thank Julianna and Mark Waugh who tragically lost their daughter, Sarah, in a horse riding accident and have worked tirelessly to improve riders safety in Australia. I thank the many horse advocates, including reporters and activists, whose work protects horses and exposes animal abuse.”