The Victorian racing community and general public will from today be able to pass on information and lodge complaints on an integrity hotline in an initiative of the Office of the Racing Integrity Commissioner.
The hotline, launched in conjunction with a new website, means racing industry integrity related complaints can be lodged directly or anonymously with the Commissioner’s office.
Racing Integrity Commissioner Sal Perna said any integrity related information provided to the Office of the Racing Integrity Commissioner would be treated in the strictest confidence.
“This information could be related to crime and corruption within the industry, an alleged or apparent contravention of the rules of a controlling body or related legislation, or an integrity matter internal to a controlling body,” Mr Perna said.
The Office of the Racing Integrity Commissioner was established on March 1 2010 under the Racing Act 1958 to provide independent oversight of integrity issues across all three racing codes - thoroughbred, harness and greyhounds.
The role also acts as a quasi-ombudsman to receive integrity related complaints concerning the Victorian racing industry.
Mr Perna said information and complaints received through the hotline would be reviewed to assess if they were relevant to his legislated role and warrant further investigation.
“Victoria is the sporting capital of Australia and we have a world class racing industry that is a billion dollar industry, a major employer and international tourist drawcard for Victoria,” he said.
“The legislation supporting my role provides me with the powers to do what is necessary to ensure the integrity of the industry is upheld across the three codes by auditing processes and systems and investigating complaints and other matters.”
Mr Perna said he had already met with more than 170 members of the racing industry and allied bodies.
“This position creates an independent and statutory body with oversight over racing and working together with industry partners to ensure integrity,” he said.
“Our new website and the Racing Integrity Hotline will work towards cementing Victoria’s world class racing reputation and shows our determination to ensure the integrity of this important industry.”
Information or complaints can be sent directly to the Commissioner’s Office by email at email@example.com or fax on 8684 7778.
Those wishing to remain anonymous can call the Racing Integrity Hotline on 1300 227 225, email firstname.lastname@example.org or fax 9882 4480.
More information on the new website can be found at www.racingintegrity.vic.gov.au