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Posted by Equestrian New South Wales on 20/04/2015.



On 19 April 2015, Equestrian Australia (EA) held a Special General Meeting, to consider a motion put forward by Equestrian NSW and Equestrian Queensland, which effectively called for EA to revoke the Hendra By-Law and cease consideration of any By-Law which has mandatory Hendra vaccination.

Equestrian NSW spoke in favour of the motion and detailed the concerns of its members and organising committees, including:

  • The Hendra vaccine had not received full registration from the Federal Government approving agency (APVMA).The vaccine had to be administered every six months, not 12 as was intended by the manufacturer Zoetis.
  • The frequency and seriousness of adverse reactions.
  • Hendra vaccination should be pro-choice.
  • Hendra had not occurred at an EA event.
  • Other equestrian organisations (eg Racing NSW) were not mandating Hendra vaccination.
  • Organising committees are concerned about their potential legal liability if a Hendra incident occurs at an EA sanctioned event.
  • Some vets are refusing to attend events and treat horses which are not Hendra vaccinated.

Three State Branches voted for the motion and three voted against it.  Equestrian NSW voted in favour of the motion.  Under the EA Constitution, without a majority, the motion failed.

The Hendra By-Law had already been revoked before the Special General Meeting.  The EA Board and State Branches unanimously agreed that it was the right decision.  EA will continue with its Hendra Review and has committed to consult fully with all stakeholders.  It has also committed to giving the State Branches at least three months notice before introducing any new By-Law, in order for the State Branches to exercise their constitutional rights to review and potentially reject any proposal.

Equestrian NSW will continue to consult with its members, organising committees, relevant government agencies and EA to ensure that the risks associated with the Hendra Virus are managed to be as low as reasonably practical.

For further details please contact Bruce Farrar (email to [email protected] or call 9620 2660).

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