CALIFORNIA THOROUGHBRED TRAINERS TO PARTICIPATE IN FUND-RAISING FOR STANDING MRI AT SANTA ANITAAt a special Board of Directors meeting held Sunday, October 27, the leadership of California Thoroughbred Trainers (CTT) voted to assist in immediate fund-raising for the Southern California Equine Foundation (SCEF) purchase of an equine MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) facility to be added to the Equine Imaging Center at Santa Anita Park. The proven technology has been in use elsewhere previously, whereby the horse is standing while scanned.The urgency of the fund-raising effort is based on a November 15 deadline to contract for the equipment which would then be installed at Santa Anita prior to the start of the upcoming Winter/Spring Thoroughbred race meeting commencing on December 26. SCEF, via the Dolly Green Foundation, has already pledged $450,000 to the project. Raising a matching amount would not only secure the standing MRI for use with horses at Santa Anita and training elsewhere in Southern California, but also reduce the ongoing per-scan charges for veterinarians, owners, and trainers, once the facility is installed.The addition of the standing MRI would complete the state-of-the-art Santa Anita Imaging Center, which already includes nuclear scintigraphy (“nuc scan”) technology and will soon add a newly-developed equine PET scan (Positron Emission Tomography) installation, made possible by a $500,000 contribution from The Stronach Group (TSG), owner of Santa Anita Park, and $200,000 via the Dolly Green Foundation. Between the two projects, the Dolly Green Foundation will have committed $650,000. TSG will also provide all installation infrastructure required for the addition of the standing MRI. The Imaging Center is a companion facility to the renowned Equine Hospital at Santa Anita Park, founded 40 years ago as the first-ever at a race track.Donations of any amount to SCEF, organized under Section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code, are tax-deductible to the full extent permitted by law.The completion of the Imaging Center is of critical importance for the future of racing in California, and elsewhere, given the increasing public scrutiny of the welfare of race horses. All techniques possible must be employed for purposes of diagnosis and injury prevention, and California racing has led the way for decades in equine welfare. The sport employs tens of thousands throughout California, directly and indirectly, who depend on its continuation and improvement for their own livelihoods. The thousands of horses in training for racing in California and elsewhere deserve the best diagnostic and treatment techniques possible to ensure their soundness and appropriate care.To donate, contact Southern California Equine Foundation [scef-inc.com], California Thoroughbred Trainers at Santa Anita Park, or contribute via GoFundMe. Donations of any amount are very much appreciated.
The government has launched an inquiry into the future world of work, focusing on the working practices, status and rights of agency staff, self-employed individuals and those working in the gig economy.The inquiry, led by The Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee, centres on issues such as low pay and poor working conditions for people who work in non-traditional employee roles.The inquiry follows the committee’s inquiries into working practices at Sports Direct and the digital economy, as well as questions around the status of workers in the on-demand economy.The issues to be addressed by the inquiry include: the definition of ‘worker’; the status and rights of agency workers, casual workers and the self employed for the purposes of tax, benefits and employment law; what protections and support should be implemented for non-traditional employees and who should be responsible for these; what differences there should be in levels of government support for employees and the self employed, for example when it comes to sick pay, holiday pay, pensions and maternity pay.The inquiry will also examine issues around terms and conditions of employees, such as zero-hour contracts, and the role of trade unions in representing the self employed and individuals in non-traditional employee roles.The inquiry will be open to written submissions until 19 December 2016.Iain Wright, chair of the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee, said: “In recent months, we’ve seen growing evidence of agency workers and those working in the gig economy being exposed to poor working conditions. This growing trend raises questions over employment status and lack of worker rights.“The nature of work is undoubtedly changing. It will change further with growing use of technology and a spreading of automation across the economy. This might provide flexibility and choice for some people, but unleash insecurity and squeezed working conditions for others.“With these economic and technological changes shaking up the world of work, it’s vitally important that workers are protected.”