COSA/OHHA Want Your Help

Published: January 18, 2013 01:34 pm EST

The Liberal Leadership Convention will take place January 25, 26, and 27 at Ryerson’s Mattamy Athletic Centre (the old Maple Leaf Gardens) in Toronto. The Candidates have expressed an interest in reconnecting with rural Ontario.

We are asking for your support to impress upon the candidates the seriousness of harness racing’s current situation. If you are interested in attending, carrying signs, and committing four hours of your time on either the 25th or 26th, please contact Cathy Boughton of the Central Ontario Standardbred Association 905-854-2672 or Brian Tropea of the Ontario Harness Horse Association 905-854-6442.

Transportation will be provided to and from the convention on both days from Mohawk Racetrack (front entrance parking lot). Please call to reserve a seat on the bus. The buses will be leaving Mohawk at 8 a.m. and noon on both days.

Thank you for your anticipated support!




It is very disappointing to me when you go to the track and hear everyone bitching and whining about what is going on in our industry. We have an opportunity to show the liberals and the media our numbers, and no one is stepping up. People say it is too cold, I'm too busy, I have other commitments. It's to late. It's NEVER to late. I to have other things I would rather be doing, but nothing that is more important or can't be put off for another day. I find it embarrassing that the horseman are not jumping all over this. This is our last kick at the can folks if we don't show are support we are letting so many people down. Especially people like Brian Tropea and Dave Gibson who have been fighting for us for almost a year. How do you think this makes them feel? COME ON FELLOW HORSEMAN AND WOMAN LETS ban together and show ONTARIO how important horse racing is to rural Ontario and to the economy.

In reply to by Gary Blackburn

I think everyone is agreed that these candidates are going to say what it takes to win the leadership. Wether they honour the promises when elected leader is another thing. What could happen here is come election time the vote could be split between all political parties votes will flow to the liberals on promises made at this convention/demostration. The only way to be certain to overturn the killer blows to the industry is election day and voting them out ...not aligning to the leadership candidate that says I'am going to change past mistakes, they have had several opportunities to do that. Windsor has been hit the hardest and the "Warrior Princess" who looks like the new leader has said nothing on the issue. Nothing wrong with having a march just dont expect any resoloutions from these candidates bring on the ballot box.

Perhaps if the heads of OHHA and COSA went on a hunger strike they could get a meeting with McGuinty and Duncan and start moving things ahead. It seems to work with some groups.

I have called Cathy to let her know about our group going to the Rally. I was shocked when I was told how many people have called. What is the matter? The Ont Libs have punched you in the mouth and stole your lunch money and you just stand there and take this. I own 12.5% of a Horse and have very little invested in the Horse Industry but I have grown up with it and know how hard these people work and it is hard to not find a good person in the Industry. If you won't fight for your livelihood and for your families you deserve this wrong headed outcome! Quit sitting on your ass hoping things will change, That is the wrong way to go about it. Every Trainer must have at least 20 people that benefits from their operations. Every Trainer needs to take a day and call everyone that benefits from them and demand they go to the Rally. What happens Friday and Saturday could dictate the rest of your lifes. So step up and be heard, Horsemen have more guts then anyone I know time to show it.

I'm not sure if there are flyers circulating that are more up to date, but the flyer I had created earlier in the year (The Broken Promise) can be found at this link and everyone is more than welcome to print some off. I still have some but like I said, there may be something a little more current to bring along.

The thought process by this industry of a protest changing the minds of any Liberal candidate is assinine. Each of the Liberal candidates will say anything to garner votes and with their parties track record they will do nothing for this industry. To believe otherwise is wishful thinking.

It's been almost a year since this industry has come under attack and this industry has not done nearly what is needed to get the public's attention. This planned protest may be the last chance to do so. If people are not willing to fight for this industry, then you are letting down future generations of horsepeople as well as the people you race against each week. If you cannot take time out of your schedule to fight the crooked people who are taking your living away, then what does that say about you as a person.

A protest that will get the publics attention needs to first be organized and then finalized with an announcement from this website ASAP. The protest needs to take place Friday, January 25 because on Saturday January 26 OPSEU is having a massive protest and the horsepeople will be invisible.

In reply to by hamiltnr

Your exactly right we need leadrship in a big way we need to be organized and we need everyone to show up and if we do this the fight will be far from over i have called ohha office about voluntering, but have had no responce yet about it. So if there was 25000 to 50000 people trying to reach Them right now it would be near imposible to organize this all in under a weeks time so please pick a time get the flyers posters ready and lets get everyone out there and fight

While I love the idea of taking some of our horses to this rally, I'm not sure that it is fair to the horses. However, every horse person could carry one of those hobby horse toys held up with their signs. It would make a great photo for the media. Even better, get the kids involved--riding on their Dad's shoulders with their horse heads held high. Just a suggestion. I'm afraid of something happening to spook a horse and possible injuries to animals and humans.

Maybe driving trucks (loaded with feed bags, hay, straw and bags of shavings) and trailers past the building would be effective?? Plaster them with signs that these vehicles and supplies will not be purchased should we lose horseracing. Some farm machinery would be great too but I can't see getting them to downtown Toronto. Lots of dollars tied up there. Get some bikes there maybe? Get some vets to come dressed in their scrubs. A truck load of manure with a sign on it--"This stinks but not as much as the Liberal/OLG's plan to kill 60,000 jobs, rural/agricultural Ontario and thousands of innocent horses". Maybe a small parcel delivered to each candidate with a note saying the same thing and adding "Straight from the horses a$$ but more beneficial to the economy than what McGuinty and Godfrey have concocted". The sky is the limit in our last days of this fight and desperate times calls for desperate measures.
Go for it folks! This is your last real chance to make a difference.

Will COSA and OHHA or even OHRIA be providing the picket signage? (After all, we have all paid fees to them, or made financial contributions to assist in this fight, so it's the least they can do for the volunteers in return...) Banners, if we want to congregate and march? Handouts are a must - will they put those together too? Or is the expectation that we look like a ragtag bunch with home made signage and conflicting info on our handouts? We have to be as professional as the other groups that will be there protesting too, so lets do this RIGHT! Will those of you with colours please wear them? We will need bullhorns so our speakers can be heard - hope that we can have the Motts there, Senator Runciman, Dennis Mills, Sue Leslie, and the media personalities that have been trying to help all these long months. This may very well be our last stand, so EVERYONE must make the effort to be there. Bring every friend, family member and employee that you can convince to come. Clogging major arteries with trucks and horse trailers might not be a bad idea either. I will be committing to be there on Saturday and will drag as many of my friends and staff along that I can. Hope you all do the same for BOTH days!

In reply to by howard pearce

This is just a thought but how about we ralley everyone together to protest one whole day with hopefully huge numbers to really make ourselfs noticed and strong and then after that we can rotate 4 hours at a time with who ever can on those days. Were running out of time so i think we need huge numbers and everyone with any interest in this to show up and fight for there livaly hoods get this organized and fast please

YES - WE do need to show our SUPPORT - MAYBE then they will stop ignoring this situation - WE need to get noticed - WHY ARE WE PAYING THESE PEOPLE to Kill the INDUSTRY?

Lack of LEADERSHIP would be more like it - and we elected them? WHY?

Mr. Pearce, has the right idea, EXACTLY,, ( normal = gets unnoticed, !! be dramatic) ,, Church and Carleton !!!!! Perfect !! What time on the 25th ?

This could well be our last stand, for God's sake people, step up. Make a sign, drive, bring your quietest horse for the City folk to pat, catch a ride to Mohawk, whatever, just get there if you love this game. I'm coming from Windsor, working on a full carload. We will put in our 4 hours to stop this, will you?

Brilliant Mr. Pearce. Simply brilliant! And a total embarrassment to the Liberal Party and the candidates. Don't forget to have a handout ready for the media as well, with particular attention to the Liberal Party connections regarding bingos, money flowing into OLP coffers from American Casino folks etc. Make sure the press have lots of material for pointed questions and you'll get the headlines.

Sign up people lets go! Teachers, Students in Quebec, Natives all had one thing in common to get press. NUMBERS!

So far we have been very civilized in the manner we have been objecting to the Liberal parties devastation of our industry.Here is our chance to really be heard.Why don't we take 6-7 horses to the Convention.Of course we would never be allowed to enter,in fact we might get arrested, but the media will jump all over it.And when asked why we brought the horses we can answer that we wanted each candidate to give them a little hug on their way to be euthanized.