- AFTER RECENT MISLEADING POST BY MEMBERS ON SOCIAL MEDIA SIGHTS
It is evident that some of our members have some difficulty in comprehending just what is amiable, fair and productive on social media. Along with healthy thought provoking discussion, some choose to engage in discussions that are in fact destructive to the industry, discrediting to the breed, disrespectful to the organisation and distasteful to the membership as a whole.
Those who attended the recent AGM and/or the Annual Judges meeting would have heard the reasoning behind the Boards' actions with regards to this matter. The AHSA is one of the last, in a long list of Equestrian Societies, who sadly, now need to act on the use of social media.
The Board of the Arabian Horse Society of Australia (AHSA) has long been aware of undesirable practises that do not serve the best welfare of Arabian horses attending shows. The Board has been extremely proactive in monitoring, as well as developing methods, protocols and regulations for resolving and eradicating these issues. This aim is an ongoing and constant commitment by the AHSA Board. On a global scale, Australia has been extremely successful in curtailing Arabian show horse abuse. This has been notably recognised and was recently substantiated by the glowing comments from our three International Judges at the Australian Arabian National Championships, remarking on how refreshingly pleasant it was to judge in Australia as the horses appear happy, are so well behaved and relaxed. They are respectfully handled and presented. This fact was also endorsed by an Australian animal regulating authority that had representatives present during the recent National Championships. The management structure to abolish show horse abuse at Australian Arabian shows has been achieved by several implemented Arabian show requirements. The introduction of the red card and warning system, briefing of Judges and officials, regulations on whip use, regulations on horses exhibiting signs of stress, strictly controlled stimulation, actions against the "hard pose", a reduction in pressure on the horses as well as limiting the stand-up time. The AHSA is also aware of the difficulty our affiliates face obtaining the services of stewards and officials with the knowledge, experience and gumption to ensure that the AHSA rules are being adhered to. Therefore, the Board is currently in the process of developing officials to be members of a Disciplinary Committee. Training suitable people to assist the affiliates in this area will insure that rules as well as horse welfare practices are strictly adhered to.
There are appropriate channels for being proactive with any complaints or concerns about judging, member’s behaviour or horse welfare issues. The most effective way to bring about change is by voicing your concerns and providing evidence through the correct channels and departments who are the ones in the position to activate positive change. The board does NOT tolerate horse abuse in any form or by any member regardless of their station or status. Social Media is not the place to air these grievances, especially without solidifying the complete and accurate facts. It has become increasingly apparent that many social media users fall blindly into ‘hear say’ comments being posted that have no real grounds, facts or evidence to back their statements. To become embroiled in such comments and make judgement on a person or action when you are unaware of the FULL facts is reckless, destructive and often ends up with innocent people being damaged or discredited. All too often the breed becomes cast in an extremely poor light as does the many wonderful dedicated people within the industry. These destructive comments are often based on an individual’s emotionally driven personal view or skewed judgment, often being formed about something but not necessarily based on actual facts or knowledge.
The Board is continuously looking at ways to promote the Arabian breed, it's breeders, and the Society. The costs are considerable; it takes a great amount of time, resources and finances. However, with a few misguided, misdirected and often malicious words typed out on a keyboard, then posted by a member on social media, much of this proactive and positive promotion is negated into little more than a shattered investment by AHSA, trying to make a positive difference for the breed and its breeders. Sadly, it ends in wasted money, shattered spirits, disenchanted members, as well as a bad social image for our breed and our Society. The responsibility of promoting the Arabian is not just in the hands of the Board of Directors, it requires each and every member to be constructive and positive in promoting the breed and the Society.
The Board has already found the need to bring to the attention of several members that their actions or social media comments are bordering on discrediting the Society, its officials, the breed or the Society's members. It has been pointed out that social media is not the way to achieve a positive change and to have your concern officially investigated.
If any member would like to discuss the issue surrounding social media you are more than welcome to contact myself Leonie Williamson as society Chairman, the senior vice chairman Allan Preston, the secretary or any other Board Member in your State. All contact numbers are listed on the Board page of the AHSA website.
- The Versatile Arabian Horse Magazine
For those members who were not at the AGM or have not read the Treasurers Report from the AGM the Board of the Arabian Horse Society of Australia would like to advise members of the decision regarding the ‘Versatile Arabian Horse’ magazine (previously AHN).
The board has discussed for some time the viability of the magazine and if it was in fact ‘value for money’ and was it the best way to promote the Arabian. With increased costs including postage costs it was inevitable that we needed to make a decision – Increase Membership or look at possible better options.
After discussions, options and quotes from different companies it was decided that Vink Publishing would continue as our provider and that the number of copies would reduce to 3 Hard Copies in 2016 and 2 Hard Copies from 2017. These Bi-Annual copies will increase in size of between 450 and 490 grams, the Members Bulletin will become a more informative in-house publication and we will also be utilising electronic media to inform members in a timely manner.
We have also introduced the Members Loyalty Program for full members, which is a fabulous way for these members to make savings on their everyday spending. The cost of the membership can be saved with very little effort. If you haven’t signed up for this, please contact the office.
This decision means that we have been able to maintain our membership fee structure for another year (the fourth in a row) and give us more scope to promote in other areas to encourage new owners and members.
- 2017 Australian Arabian National Championships
Expressions of interest are invited for Affiliates or Groups interested in tendering to conduct the Australian Arabian National Championships in March 2017. Expressions of Interest must be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org prior to 13th May 2016 in order for a more detailed submission to be considered. Detailed submissions must be received by the Secretary prior to 30th June 2016 by emailing email@example.com or posting to P.O. Box 415, Richmond 2753
- The Arabian Horse Society of Australia Ltd. Annual General Meeting
The Forty-first Annual General meeting of The Arabian Horse Society of Australia Ltd. was be held at The Riders' Retreat, Sydney International Equestrian Centre, Saxony Road, HORSLEY PARK NSW 2175 on Sunday 3rd April 2016.
All Directors were in attendance, along with fifty plus members. Outgoing Directors stood down and our newly elected Directors took office. All AGM Reports can be viewed on the Board Page of the website, while Financial Statements and Membership and Registry Data can be viewed on the Membership Page
- The Arabian Horse Society of Australia Ltd. Board Elections for 2016/2017
The Arabian Horse Society of Australia Ltd. 2016/2017 Board Elections have concluded and we are pleased to announce that the elected Board Members are:
Glenys Lilley NSW
Marjory Stuart-Smith NSW
Debra Watson QLD (unopposed)
Richard Shipton SA
All elected directors will take office at our AGM in April 2016.
The AHSA Board of Directors congratulates the new directors and also wishes to thank the outgoing Directors for their invaluable knowledge, time and willingness to serve the Members of The AHSA Ltd.
The election was managed by Elections Australia Pty Ltd and a full Report from Election Australia Pty Ltd can be found here.
The AHSA has worked hard to bring exciting benefits to Full Members and Life Members of the “Arabian Horse Society”, with the AHSA Rewards Program. You can save up to $10,000 from leading Australian retailers.
Save up to $10.000 annually with more than 1000 major retailers, best rate for movie tickets, exclusive travel and hotel offers, discounts at 1600+ Restaurants and exclusive 50% OFF online shopping.
These exclusive offers are ONLY available to 2016 Full Members and Life Members. To start saving, then you can register by going to our AHSA Rewards Login page here. (please allow time for your membership to be processed and logged into the rewards system - you will receive an email to advise you when you can register)
If you are an Associate, Concession or Junior AHSA Member and wish to join the program, then you can upgrade your AHSA Membership to do so. Call the AHSA Office and the staff will advise you how.