GREYHOUND racing NSW (GRNSW) has taken a giant leap into the 21st century, issuing its first Public Content Policy which is set to outline the authority body’s expectations of industry participants who chose to make any public comment – including social media – in relation to greyhound racing.
The new policy is set to apply to all industry participants as well as GRNSW staff members and club officials, with a breach in the policy making the offender open to disciplinary action under the Greyhound Racing Rules.
Additionally, a policy breach may also include breaches of other GRNSW governing documents, such as the Greyhound Racing NSW Discrimination, Harassment and Bullying Policy. If staff members are found to have breached the Public Content Policy, they will also face disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.
A statement by GRNSW said while it is important to engage in public conversation, the new policy is set to ensure the image of the sport and participants is upheld.
“The new policy does not intend to discourage, nor unduly limit, personal expression or online activities,” the statement read.
“However, each industry participant can be seen as an ambassador for greyhound racing and therefore any public comment they make may impact the industry as a whole.
“Examples of unacceptable public comment under the policy include comments that defame members of the greyhound racing industry, are discriminatory or racist in nature or misrepresent the source of comments or the identity of the maker.
“This policy does not restrict legitimate public comment, and GRNSW encourages industry participants and members of the public to raise legitimate animal welfare concerns.”
Due to the new Public Comment Policy, GRNSW have also made slight amendments to the Local Racing Rules. A new rule, LR86(a),(b) and (c) has been added to provide greater clarity to GAR 86(e),(f) and (q) which address specific offences and rules relating to public comment in regards to greyhound racing.