Green Party urged to support bill to ban cruel hare coursing

7 Nov

green party urge to support bill to ban coursing 2022 copy

The Green Party is once again being urged to pledge support for Paul Murphy TD’s upcoming bill which aims to outlaw cruel hare coursing in Ireland. The bill is expected back before the Dail in the coming months.

The Green Party’s Animal Welfare Policy clearly states: “The Green Party is opposed to all bloodsports and we will bring in legislation to end hare coursing, fox hunting, hare hunting and mink hunting”. However, in 2020, the party’s deputy leader Catherine Martin TD stated that if government coalition partners Fianna Fail and Fine Gael vote against the Bill to ban coursing, then she would also vote against it “with the heaviest of hearts”.

This is unacceptable. The Green Party must act in accordance with its own policy on the issue and respect the wishes of the 77% majority who want coursing banned.

Previously, Minister Martin said that she “looks forward to a time when these barbaric [bloodsport] practices are outlawed in Ireland” and declared that “the Green Party has always been opposed to all blood sports and remains resolutely so.”

In a June 2016 Dail speech in support of Maureen O’Sullivan TD’s bill to ban coursing, Minister Martin stated: “Needless to say the Green Party will be supporting this Bill…To be absolutely clear, hare coursing is a brutal ordeal. Before the hares experience this ordeal, they are trapped and trained which is cruel enough. They are solitary creatures and keep to themselves in the wild, so keeping them in an enclosure causes significant stress and fear. Hare coursing involves the terrorising of one animal by another animal as a so-called sport, all the while being watched as entertainment. Not only are these timid and delicate creatures terrified and brutalised in this practice, they often suffer severe injuries and death. The hare is a brittle-boned creature and its internal injuries cannot heal. Injured hares have to be put down.”

Meanwhile, Green Party leader Eamon Ryan is on record as stating: “I am firmly opposed to the current practice of fox hunting and hare coursing in the country which I feel cannot be defended on the grounds of preserving rural traditions or indeed any other conservation or rural development arguments.” In 2012, he attended an anti-coursing protest outside the Department of Agriculture in Dublin.

Green Party Minister of State for Heritage, Malcolm Noonan – whose department has continued to license coursing, despite the cruelty and fears over the spread of the deadly RHD2 virus – has also expressed opposition to coursing, condemning it as a “cruel practice” and pointing out that the appalling treatment of hares “highlights a shocking disregard for the welfare of the animals”.

Speaking during the Green Party’s “Our Environment and How We Protect It” online public meeting in July 2020, he stated: “We all want to see hare coursing ended – it’s a cruel practice.”

Paul Murphy TD (Solidarity-People Before Profit) introduced the Animal Health & Welfare (Ban on Hare Coursing) Bill in September 2020. Presenting the bill – which is co-signed by TDs Gino Kenny, Mick Barry, Richard Boyd Barrett, Brid Smith, Joan Collins and Catherine Connolly – Deputy Murphy condemned coursing as “a cruel, barbaric and outdated practice”.

“It has been banned across Britain and Northern Ireland and across all of the EU, apart from three countries, including Ireland,” he stated.

A ban on coursing is long overdue. Contact Green Party TDs – and all your local TDs – today and urge them to give their backing to the bill.

Witness the cruelty of hare coursing in Ireland


Urge the Green Party to respect the wishes of the 77% majority who want coursing banned and pledge support for Paul Murphy TD’s bill which aims to outlaw the cruel bloodsport. The bill is expected back before the Dail in the coming months.

View the Green Party’s Animal Welfare Policy document

Contact Green Party TDs NOW

Email addresses for all 12 Green Party TDs:;;;;;;;;;;

Eamon Ryan TD (Dublin Bay South)
Leader, Green Party
Tel: 01 618 3894

Catherine Martin TD (Dublin Rathdown)
Green Party Deputy Leader and Minister for Culture and Heritage
Tel: (01) 618 3018

Malcolm Noonan TD (Carlow Kilkenny)
Heritage Minister
Tel: (01) 6183148

Neasa Hourigan TD (Dublin Central)
Tel: (01) 618 3172
Twitter: @neasa_neasa

Joe O’Brien TD (Dublin Fingal)
Tel: 01 618 4114
Twitter: @joefingalgreen

Patrick Costello TD (Dublin South Central)
Tel: (01) 618 3566
Twitter: @Costellop

Francis Noel Duffy TD (Dublin South West)
Tel: (01) 618 4236
Twitter: @FNDuffy

Roderic O’Gorman TD (Dublin West)
Tel: (01) 618 3222
Twitter: @rodericogorman

Ossian Smyth TD (Dún Laoghaire)
Tel: (01) 618 3362
Twitter: @smytho

Brian Leddin TD (Limerick City)
Tel: (01) 618 3205
Twitter: @BrianLeddin

Marc O’Cathasaigh TD (Waterford)
Tel: (01) 618 3223
Twitter: @MarcKC_Green

Steven Matthews TD (Wicklow)
Tel: (01) 6183513
Twitter: @stevensgreen1

Please sign and share the petitions

Ban Blood Sports in Ireland

Ireland – Ban cruel hare coursing

Please support our campaign with a donation

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