Fund public services not animal abuse

Newly co-opted Solidarity councillor Mary Cahillane

SOLIDARITY’S general election candidate in Limerick City, Mary Cahillane, has called on the government to stop funding the greyhound industry and instead prioritise funding essential public services such as health.

Ms Cahillane, a former city councillor, recently supported the Ban Greyhound Racing campaign’s protests outside the Limerick Greyhound Track.

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“The fact that the government are ploughing over €16 million a year into an industry which only has a turnover of €22 million is obscene when this money could be spent on MRI machines for hospitals, housing, special needs services – the list is endless,” she said.

“The reality is that this industry is not profitable and could not exist without this state subsidy. We know that 6,000 Irish greyhounds are killed each year just for not racing fast enough and endure horrific cruelty. Ireland is one of only eight countries in the world that still allows greyhound racing. Greyhounds aren’t even considered to be dogs under Irish law, instead they are classified as farm animals.

“The government are effectively facilitating and funding this abuse of animals. At the same time their underfunding of essential public services is an abuse of people.”

Ms Cahillane pledged that animal rights would be to the fore of her agenda if elected, saying: “I’ve already been active campaigning against animal cruelty, I wouldn’t stop if elected to the Dáil. In fact, it would give me an even greater platform to make a stand,” she concluded.