Horse Racing Supporters Call for Santa Anita to Open

Oscar De La Torres
Longtime advocate for the workers at Santa Anita, Oscar De La Torres. – Photo by Terry Miller / Beacon Media News

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors and the L.A. County health department are reviewing a proposal from Santa Anita to resume “spectator-less” live racing.

Live racing provides the financial support for the wellbeing of horses and the workers who take care of them. On March 27, 2020 based on a complaint, live racing was prohibited by the L.A. County health department at Santa Anita as a “non-essential” business.

There have been no reports of positive COVID-19 infections at Santa Anita and live racing at Los Alamitos (under the jurisdiction of the Orange County Board of Supervisors) has continued unabated with no reports of COVID-19.

Santa Anita has reportedly implemented protocols to strengthen public health and safety for workers and horses.

On Tuesday, the Board of Supervisors failed to address the issue at Santa Anita.

Oscar De La Torre, an advocate for backstretch workers, organized a rally that included several horse owners outside the Board of Supervisors Tuesday. Their early-morning duties at the track prevented many workers from attending, he said.

De La Torre told the Associated Press Tuesday, that despite the County not taking specific action regarding reopening Santa Anita, he was please the County agreed to a reopening plan and hopes Santa Anita will be part of that plan.

April 30, 2020

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Terry Miller

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