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Wednesday, 12 February 2014
Page: 211

Mr THISTLETHWAITE (Kingsford Smith) (13:51): The Australian Jockeys' Association, or AJA, represents all 850 jockeys throughout Australia. Many of them live in my electorate and work at the wonderful Royal Randwick racecourse. The AJA recently received legal advice that jockeys, like every other worker in Australia, may be entitled to superannuation. In the wake of that advice, the AJA sought a ruling from the Australian Taxation Office. For exercising this right, Peter McGauran, the CEO of the Australian Racing Board and a former National Party member of parliament, described the Australian Jockeys' Association and jockeys in this country as 'unethical', 'immoral', 'hypocritical' and 'cowardly' and he said that they were holding a gun to the head of racing authorities. Mr McGauran's comments are shameful, Dickensian and disrespectful to the 850 hardworking jockeys in this country, 25 per cent of whom are women. They work in a dangerous occupation and have relatively short careers. They deserve to be paid superannuation. Jockeys should not be persecuted for exercising a workplace right available to other workers. This should be determined by the Australian Taxation Office and not unjustifiable hysteria from the likes of Mr McGauran. I ask that the Minister for Sport and member for Dickson condemn these comments of Mr McGauran and disassociate himself from them.