Greyhound Racing: Animal Welfare

Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 26th October 2020.

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Photo of Andrew Rosindell Andrew Rosindell Conservative, Romford

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when (a) he and (b) members of his Department last met with representatives of the betting and gaming industries to discuss improving greyhound welfare.

Photo of Andrew Rosindell Andrew Rosindell Conservative, Romford

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of British Greyhound Racing Fund’s levy being made mandatory in the context of the statutory levy imposed on Bookmakers by the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Act 1963.

Photo of Nigel Huddleston Nigel Huddleston Assistant Whip, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

In January 2019 the Government announced that it had secured a new funding commitment from five of the largest online bookmakers to help ensure the welfare of greyhounds is protected and improved. This was in addition to the existing voluntary payments made to the British Greyhound Racing Fund from most betting operators that benefit from greyhound racing, which sit alongside commercial deals between the betting and racing industries. In 2019/20 the BGRF collected a total of £8.87m, up from £6.95m in the previous 12 months.

Government has no plans to introduce a mandatory levy and will continue to encourage any remaining bookmakers that have not signed up to the voluntary arrangements to follow suit. The Department has discussions with the betting and greyhound racing industries on a range of issues and expects both to make sure that greyhound welfare is safeguarded and remains at the heart of the sport.

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