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Coursing is indefensible -- even hares that escape soon die

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A coursing meeting in Clonmel, Co Tipperary

A coursing meeting in Clonmel, Co Tipperary

A coursing meeting in Clonmel, Co Tipperary

In his shameful defence of coursing, Brian Purcell of 'The Apprentice' claims that "the hare always gets away" (Irish Independent, March 20).

National Parks and Wildlife Service monitoring reports show that his statement is completely false. These routinely record the hares that have not got away, including ones killed after suffering agonising injuries such as dislocated hips and broken legs.

In coursing clubs in Mr Purcell's native Kerry, hares have been mauled so severely by greyhounds that they had to be put down.

The hares that do get away have not necessarily survived the ordeal of being netted from the wild and used as lures. Their welfare has been seriously compromised and they are at risk of succumbing to capture myopathy -- a stress-related condition that claims victims weeks and months later.

Philip Kiernan
Irish Council Against Blood Sports, Mullingar, Co Westmeath

I note the contents of Cathal Garvey's letter (March 23) in response to mine (March 17).

I wholeheartedly agree that the public should have access to the written findings of the family law courts but the privacy of the parties must be protected at all costs and the hearings should not be in public.

The purpose of the in-camera rule is to protect the identity of the parties.

Mr Garvey is correct that the family home often remains in the mother's name but this is usually for the sole reason that she happens to be the primary carer.

As a firm advocate of ADR (alternative dispute resolution), justice is more obviously seen to be done when family law cases are kept out of court altogether.

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Josepha Madigan
Family Law Partner, accredited Mediator and Collaborative Practitioner, Dublin 6W


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