QRIC Media Release: Compliance Assurance Team cracks down on racing misconduct
Monday 24 July 2023
A diverse new team of investigators with backgrounds in racing, law enforcement and animal welfare will strengthen the Queensland Racing Integrity Commission (QRIC)’s offensive on misconduct in the racing industry.
The experienced investigators will comprise the new Compliance Assurance Team (CAT), a team of stewards tasked with investigating allegations of misconduct including animal welfare and cruelty concerns and non-compliance of the Racing Integrity Act 2016, Racing Integrity Amendment Act 2002 and the Rules of Racing.
Seven CAT stewards have been hired in a national recruitment campaign to work across Queensland from any location, including Brisbane and across the Darling Downs, Central, Western and North Queensland regions.
QRIC Commissioner Shane Gillard said that recruitment focussed on hiring investigators with a broad range of skills.
“Our goal when recruiting the Compliance Assurance Team was to find well-rounded people, whose insights will build out our capabilities around compliance, animal welfare and enforcing the Rules of Racing and other relevant laws,” he said.
“Some have spent years working in the racing industry, while others have compliance backgrounds with animal welfare groups like the RSPCA, but one thing they all have in common is strong investigative abilities.”
The appointment of the CAT stewards builds the Commission’s resource base as part of an increased commitment to stamping out non-compliance within the racing industry.
Mr Gillard said that the Compliance Assurance Team will allow QRIC to respond more quickly to potential leads and reach investigative outcomes faster.
“The main focus of their work will be around investigating data and intelligence gathered, so I encourage anyone in the community to report misconduct via our anonymous reporting portal online,” he said.
“We consider all the information that we receive and take all reports seriously.”
CAT stewards will begin their work with the Commission in August.
While the majority of their work will be conducted outside of race days, CAT stewards will also provide stewarding services on race days under the guidance of the race day chairperson.
Mr Gillard said their presence will bolster confidence in Queensland’s racing industry.
“The majority of racing industry participants do the right thing, and those participants are supportive of this move because they understand that any amount of misconduct can tarnish the sport and will not be tolerated,” he said.
If you have any information about mistreatment of racing animals or wrongdoing within the sport, make a report through QRIC’s anonymous Report Something portal: Report Something – Queensland Racing Integrity Commission (qric.qld.gov.au)
Media contact: Nicole Rowles 0467 955 412