3 in 1000 Swabs Taken by Stewards are Positive

Paul ‘Basil’ O’Halloran MP
Greens Member for Braddon

The Tasmanian Greens today revealed in Budget Estimate hearings, an alarming trend in drug use where three in 1000 swabs taken by racing stewards proved positive, highlighting the need for further work to be undertaken into the use of drugs by workers, predominantly jockies, as well as on horses.

Greens Member for Braddon, Paul ‘Basil’ O’Halloran MP, found after further questioning that out of those figures one in 500 positive swab results were from jockies, raising alarm at jockey health risks within the industry, while the remaining swabs were from horses.

“This is an alarming use of drugs within the racing industry, and figures of three in 1000 swabs returning a positive result have highlighted the potential use of more sophisticated drugs being used to avoid detection,” Mr O’Halloran said.

“With jockies returning positive results one out of 500 swabs, it raises serious concerns surrounding the ongoing health of those who work in the industry.”

“It was revealed to the Greens during questioning in Budget Estimate hearings that jockies have been consuming drugs to meet weight limits, as well as to help jockies work extraordinarily long hours.”
“Minister for Racing, Bryan Green, acknowledged these are very serious concerns, and that more needs to be done in occupational health and safety within the racing industry, particularly relating to the well-being of jockies.”

“Given the alarming trend in drug use, and the potential OH&S issues for jockies surrounding their use, an inquiry on testing methods to better detect more sophisticated products needs to happen as a matter of safety, and more importantly, jockey support programs need to be strengthened,” Mr O’Halloran said.
Paul ‘Basil’ O’Halloran MP Greens Member for Braddon