Agriculture/Animal Welfare, Dáil Issues

To ask the Minister for Agriculture; Food and the Marine if he has satisfied himself with the corporate governance practice followed by HRI in the lead up to the appointment of a person (details supplied) as chief executive of a company. (Details Supplied) John Osborne HRI Racecourses Ltd.-Clare Daly TD
REPLY.
Horse Racing Ireland (HRI) is a commercial state body responsible for the overall administration, promotion and development of the horse racing industry.

The question raised by the Deputy is an operational matter for HRI.

I understand HRI Racecourses Ltd. is a subsidiary company of Horse Racing Ireland. HRI has informed me that the role involved was subject to the usual open advertisement and competitive interview process.
To ask the Minister for Agriculture; Food and the Marine if workers in the horse racing industry, such as stable staff, are classified as agricultural workers; and if so, the implications regarding their terms and conditions of employment. Clare Daly TD

REPLY.
Horse Racing Ireland is a commercial state body responsible for the overall administration, promotion and development of the horse racing industry.

This is a matter ultimately for the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation but I understand that the general corpus of employment legislation including the Terms of Employment (Information) Acts, the Payment of Wages Act, the Protection of  Young Persons (Employment) Act and the Unfair Dismissals Acts, applies to the horse racing industry.

I believe also that the Organisation of Working Time (General Exemptions) Regulations 1998 (SI No. 21 of 1988) exempt certain activities, including agricultural activities, from the application of minimum rest periods (Section 11, Section 12, Section 13 and Section 16 of the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997) but horse racing activities are not specifically exempted under these Regulations.

Inspectors of the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) have regard, on a case by case basis, to exemptions when determining compliance with employment rights entitlements.