Greyhounds Transition Taskforce Coordinator General Dr John Keniry AM will visit Dapto today to hear from the industry to inform a transition package that will assist them following the decision to close greyhound racing in NSW.
Dr Keniry was appointed by the NSW Government to work with the greyhound racing industry to ensure a humane and orderly transition to cease racing on 1 July, 2017.
Dr Keniry said the NSW Government had committed to a raft of measures, including financial assistance, and other government and non-government support services, such as training programs and business advice.
"Discussions with industry are key to providing the taskforce with the information needed to develop a transition package that addresses the needs of the affected people and animals. Dapto is one of several regional centres I have visited and it will be the final meeting in this process," Dr Keniry said.
"People are telling me they want answers now on the assistance that will be available as part of the transition package, and clarity on finishing dates for activities outside racing, such as breeding, training and keeping greyhounds.
"I have begun work on my recommendations, which will be put to government at the end of this month. The government will then decide what assistance to provide to people affected by the closure, which is expected later this year."
Dr Keniry said the government had recognised the assistance package should include financial support to enable greyhound owners to keep their dogs.
"Many people have told me they want to keep their dogs, but without an income from racing this would be difficult. This measure will ensure the welfare of greyhounds and reduce the number of dogs being surrendered."
A dedicated phone line run by trained counsellors is available to answer questions about the transition, and provide free confidential counselling for people feeling distressed about the closure. Please call 1800 812 115.
Those wishing to have their say on the transition package, can complete a short online survey at www.greyhounds.justice.nsw.gov.au