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Dublin: 14 °C Thursday 22 August, 2019

Ross calls for resignations over greyhound scandal saying it amounts to 'subsidised cruelty'

A spokesperson for the minister said there was a 40 minute discussion at Cabinet yesterday over the controversy

Image: Shutterstock/Klaus Hertz-Ladiges

SPORTS MINISTER SHANE Ross has told his ministerial colleagues that the practices uncovered by a recent RTÉ Prime Time Investigates programme into the greyhound industry amount to ”subsidised cruelty”.

A spokesperson for the minister said there was a 40 minute discussion at Cabinet yesterday over the controversy, with Ross stating that it was not good enough that the Irish Greyhound Board didn’t act earlier to safeguard dogs.

It is understood that the minister argued that the IGB should resign in the wake of the scandal.

The Preferred Results report, uncovered by RTÉ, which was completed in 2017, but never published, stated that up to 6,000 greyhounds are being killed each year because they are not fast enough.

It is believed the minister told his Cabinet colleagues that it was not acceptable that no one is being held accountable, adding that the report was allowed to lie idle until uncovered by the programme.

The minister was told that the board would not be resigning, with Minister of State with responsibility for the greyhound sector, Andrew Doyle, bringing a memo to the Cabinet on how conditions for greyhounds were being improved.

Doyle said a review of funding to the industry was being undertaken, with 10% of government spending that goes to the industry – which amounts to €16 million – to go to greyhound welfare.

The junior minister also said his department is examining the operation of knackeries.

The update to Cabinet this week followed on from disquiet at last week’s meeting in which Ross said he was “unhappy” with the response by government to the matter and called on the government’s response to be more “robust”.

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