Harness Racing Victoria statement regarding the report for the independent review into the Victorian Racing Industry’s victim support and complaint processes

Harness Racing Victoria accepts the need for change in the Victorian Racing Industry following the publication of the Office of the Racing Integrity Commissioner’s report identifying harm experienced by people in the industries.

The review was established after Harness Racing Victoria, Racing Victoria and Greyhound Racing Victoria provided a referral to the Racing Integrity Commissioner to examine vulnerabilities and provide a clear pathway to reform.

Harness Racing Victoria, on behalf of our industry, apologises to those who have experienced unacceptable behaviour. Importantly, we also acknowledge the courage of those who have stepped forward and shared their experiences.

We recognise an industry-wide approach is needed to embed processes that foster safe and respectful workplaces. Harness Racing Victoria will work collaboratively with government, Victorian Racing Industry colleagues, clubs and participants to review and develop a practical and properly resourced implementation of the recommendations.

The industry must offer a safe and fair environment where employees, participants and supporters have confidence in its integrity and how it cares for people.

Harness Racing Victoria chief executive Matt Isaacs said: “As the industry authority we need to do better to ensure all people and operators within harness racing can engage in safe working environments and know what is expected of them.

“Harness Racing Victoria’s board and executive will review the recommendations and work with the industry to ensure present and future generations are treated appropriately.

“This review paves the way to drive meaningful and enduring change, and we are committed to setting higher standards to promote a safer and more inclusive industry.”

For those who this raises issues, confidential support is available via 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732), Lifeline (13 11 14), Beyond Blue (1300 224 636), Headspace (1800 650 890) or Kids Helpline (1800 55 800).

HRV’s Industry Assistance Program is a confidential, professional, coaching and support service delivered by Benestar (1300 360 364) that can be accessed here. If you would like to raise a concern regarding inappropriate behaviour, we encourage you to contact HRV through this link or via email to integrity@hrv.org.au.

To read the report click here.