Two out of three people in NSW and the ACT support the ban on greyhound racing, regardless of their political persuasion*.
Despite an extended media campaign by pro-industry lobbyists, independent research commissioned by the RSPCA found 64% of people in NSW and the ACT support the ban on greyhound racing, while only 36% oppose it.
Respondents’ political preferences resulted in little difference – 66% of Liberal and Coalition voters, 63% of National Party voters and 61% of Labor voters support the ban, as well as 62% of swinging voters.
Support for the ban was slightly stronger in metropolitan areas (77% in CBD; 67% in suburban areas) but was still high in rural and regional areas (59%) and non-capital cities (58%).
“It’s worth noting these results come off the back of an intense and prolonged anti-ban media campaign - and yet, the findings are crystal clear,” said RSPCA Australia Senior Policy Officer Dr Jed Goodfellow.
One of the recurring themes of the anti-ban campaign is that the decision to shut down greyhound racing industry is part of ‘a war on the working class.’ But when raw data is filtered to identify blue-collar, service workers and para-professionals such as police and nurses, it was revealed that a majority of 60% still supported the ban.
Of the respondents who supported the government’s decision, almost 80% cited animal welfare concerns as the reason for their position.
“Special interest groups are doing their best to turn this decision into a political football conjuring up notions of class warfare. But this evidence shows that for the NSW and ACT public, the decision was not about politics, but animal welfare. It’s supported by the majority of Australians in these regions, across the entire political spectrum, and the majority of the so-called ‘working class’,” said Dr Goodfellow.
“This result is further proof that the majority of caring Australians are opposed to killing dogs for sport and gambling and that the NSW and ACT governments have made the right decision in responding to their concerns by ending greyhound racing in those jurisdictions.
* Independent, anonymous polling conducted of 834 NSW and ACT residents between Friday 30 September and Wednesday 5 October 2016.
The RSPCA is Australia’s leading animal welfare organisation and one of Australia’s most trusted charities. The RSPCA works to prevent cruelty to animals by actively promoting their care and protection.