Last week, the BHA published an updated Safeguarding and Human Welfare Strategy, aimed at protecting and ensuring the safety and wellbeing of everyone involved in the sport.
As the industry’s primary human welfare charity, Racing Welfare fully supports and endorses the strategy and accompanying action plan, which demonstrates the sport’s governing body’s commitment to striving for the highest of standards regarding behaviours and working practices to create a safe, sustainable and enjoyable environment for all of racing’s people.
The data which has informed the strategy highlights there are key areas for improvement across the industry which clearly need to be addressed and currently fall short of the standards expected. We welcome the steps being taken to bring about positive change, both in terms of proactive and preventative measures which very much fits with Racing Welfare’s approach to wellbeing in the workplace, as well as the focus on reporting mechanisms and processes to highlight issues of concern.
The issues raised are not unique to racing and are reflective of wider society – however, the industry has a responsibility to come together to prevent and tackle these instances of unacceptable conduct, bullying, sexual misconduct, gender inequality and discrimination and create a culture of respect.
Racing Welfare is dedicated to supporting the welfare of people working in horseracing and has long championed the importance of wellbeing in the workplace. Our proactive community outreach work serves to keep wellbeing at the forefront of employers’ and employees’ minds, and our extensive educational programme reaches people from their point of entry into the industry through to those in senior positions. Our network of expert welfare officers provide ‘on the ground’ support for a range of life’s challenges, and often provide behind-the-scenes support for racing’s people during times of crisis. There is no doubt that the continuation of this work will directly contribute towards the delivery of some of the actions outlined in the strategy, and we hope to work collaboratively with the BHA to ensure Racing Welfare plays a key role.
Anyone who has been affected by any of the issues outlined in the report can contact Racing Welfare through our 24/7 Support Line on 0800 6300 443, or by speaking to one of our welfare officers based across the country.
We would encourage anyone who has experienced or witnessed improper conduct to report it via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling the BHA’s confidential reporting service, RaceWISE on 08000 852 580.