In the interest of open debate, we are happy to publish the following letter from the Pro Racing Greyhound Group.
An ‘Open Letter’ to Michael & Rita James of CAGED Nationwide and Kerry Elliman of Birmingham Greyhound Protection (BGP) & Candy Cane Rescue:
For the attention of: Michael, Rita and Kerry:
On behalf of a large group of pro racing enthusiasts we would like to offer up the following questions for which we would appreciate an answer. We have attempted to do this several times on your FB and Twitter pages but unfortunately all comments are removed and each of us blocked from posting, so in order to give your members a fair and balanced view we have had no choice but to do it this way:
1) BOTH – When did you apply for charitable status and under what category? Could you also explain why you previously stated you were ‘Charities’ when none were registered as such and then changed to ‘Non Profit Organisation’ then ‘Charitable Organisation’ – was this to mislead the public to bolster donations?
2) BOTH – Do you follow the Peta mandate of ‘zero’ pet ownership?
3) BOTH – What will happen to the tens of thousands of Greyhounds, should you get your wish that Greyhound racing is banned, do you have a Plan B & if so what is it?
4) RITA & MICHAEL JAMES – Why is your website stating a phone number that is fake, an address that is fake, a mission statement (don’t attend track protests), that is fake and is run by people using fake names (real names Margaret Joannou & Michael Yarwood) and never declare where the donations are spent?
5) BOTH – We would like to view the accounts as to where the donations are being spent – where can these be viewed as there are no records lodged with Companies House?
6) BOTH – When stating trainers abuse greyhounds could you name the trainers and back up evidence of injuries caused by being abused and provide vet bills?
7) BOTH – Do you do a risk assessment on any park / field/ rough ground that you would be able to let a greyhound run without injuries as you have stated that they only get injured on oval tracks?
8) BOTH – What evidence do you have to substantiate your statement that greyhounds are kept for 23 hours a day in small dark kennels?
9) BOTH – You say that racing should be phased out over five years . Exactly how would you do this without euthanising any greyhounds? How would people working in the racing industry be compensated for losing their livelihoods?
10) KERRY ELLIMAN – Greyhound racing is a legal sport and it would need an act of parliament to ban it. A charity cannot politically lobby to change the law. You say that your organisations are charities so how can you be a Director of a political lobbyist anti racing organisation based in the US?
11) BOTH – How many pet greyhounds do you keep in your homes? How many reception rooms do you have? And how many cages are up?
12) KERRY ELLIMAN – you frequently state that pro racers make money from their greyhounds yet you yourself made money from your dissolved company Greyhound Gifts Ltd which was supported by pro racers – do you feel that their ‘blood money’ (your words) should be returned?
13) CAGED can you explain why your advert – banned by the ASA for not adhering to their standards – is still used when it is factually incorrect?
14) BOTH – Could you confirm what diet and veterinary attention you are providing greyhounds in your care?
15) KERRY ELLIMAN – Can you all explain your links to the terrorist group ALF? You have links to Grey2k who are linked to PETA , who are linked to ALF.
16) BOTH – If your organisation achieves charitable status who will be the trustees and what will their roles and responsibilities be?
17) KERRY ELLIMAN – claims were made to national newspapers last year regarding dogs being ‘exported for meat’ which you have on several occasions stated to be false. Also, you have claimed not to have told them these ‘facts’ despite them clearly carrying your name in every single article and quoting you clearly as the source of their information. Why has no statement been issued publicly (either on your personal page, or that of your organisations or those of the newspapers) to retract those claims and to correct the information printed as you have admitted it was not correct? This is still being used by ant- racing activists as being the truth and it is a lie so could you confirm what action will be taken to rectify this?
18) KERRY ELLIMAN – Can you give the details of the 800 ‘UK’ dogs that you state you have homed or does this figure include greyhounds from China?
19) BOTH – As our industry has been fair and transparent in publishing injury and death data and stats could you provide a list of any greyhounds you have homed that have since passed so that we may add them to our information? And do you now agree that racing has improved welfare significantly and is proving to be more accountable for all dogs?
20) BOTH – What home checks do you carry out prior to releasing a greyhound to the public and how do you follow this up?
Pro Greyhound Racing Group