“This is now a public health matter”: Pauline McLynn urges Health Minister to stop coursing meet

9 Oct

Actress and animal rights activist Pauline McLynn is calling on Health Minister Stephen Donnelly to act to prevent a hare coursing meeting taking place this Saturday and Sunday.

“I urge you to stop the hare coursing meet proposed for Liscannor this weekend from going ahead,” Pauline stated in a tweet to Minister Donnelly. “Looking at the schedule, there could be more than 144 people gathering on Saturday for this cruel event. Surely this is now a public health matter.”

Details on the Irish Coursing Club website show that on Day 1 of the Liscannor coursing meet, 72 greyhounds (including reserves) have been entered to take part in the bloodsport which sees hares forced to run for their lives within an enclosed field.

An ICC notice reveals that up to two people will be allowed to attend with each greyhound – one to bring the dog to the release area at the bottom of the field and another at the other end to try and catch the dog after the hare has been terrorised. 

This means that on Day 1, there could be 144 people in attendance, not including organisers.

On day 2, there are 28 greyhounds listed, with as many as 56 or more people.

In an appeal to Minister Donnelly and Taoiseach Micheal Martin, ICABS pointed out that the large number of coursers gathering for their weekend of barbarity comes at a time when Level 3 of Ireland’s nationwide Plan for Living with COVID-19 makes it clear that organised outdoor gatherings can only have “up to a maximum of 15 people”.

“In the interests of public safety and doing everything possible to slow the spread of COVID-19, it is imperative that you act to prevent this and subsequent coursing meets from going ahead,” we stated.

Despite growing levels of coronavirus infections and deaths and countrywide Level 3 restrictions, the coursers are shamefully determined not to let a pandemic get in the way of their animal cruelty. Their published fixtures list includes 65 meetings around the country over the next 21 weeks.

The government MUST NOT allow another season of coursing to go ahead. It would be entirely reckless and unforgivable to give a free pass to coursers and it would make a mockery of public health guidelines.


Contact Health Minister Stephen Donnelly and the Irish Government today and demand that hare coursing is stopped.

Health Minister, Stephen Donnelly

Tel: (01) 201 7300 or (01) 618 3041

Email: ministersoffice@health.gov.ie

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/DonnellyforWicklow

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/DonnellyStephen

Micheál Martin, Taoiseach

Email: micheal.martin@oireachtas.ie; info@fiannafail.ie

Phone: +353 (0)1–618 4350 or +353 (0)21-432 0088

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/michealmartintd/ 

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/@MichealMartinTD 

Leo Varadkar, Tánaiste

Telephone: +353 (0)1-704 3630 OR +353 (0)1-640 3133

Email: leo.varadkar@oireachtas.ie; finegael@finegael.ie

Tweet to: @LeoVaradkar

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LeoVaradkar

Contact Minister Darragh O’Brien and demand a withdrawal of the 2020-21 coursing licence. 

Minister Darragh O’Brien (Fianna Fail, Dublin Fingal)

Tel: (01) 618 3802 OR (086) 251 9893

Email: darragh.obrien@oireachtas.ie; minister@housing.gov.ie

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/DarraghOBrienTD

Twitter: http://twitter.com/DarraghOBrienTD

77% want cruel hare coursing banned – Please support our new billboards fundraiser.

Donate now at https://www.gofundme.com/f/help-fund-ban-greyhound-racing-billboards

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