1:41pm

Fri November 4, 2011
Business and the Economy

Jockeys Guild Asks Churchill Downs Inc. To Contribute

The Jockey’s Guild is asking Churchill Downs Incorporated (CDI) to reconsider the decision to stop making annual contributions to the guild. The guild provides life insurance and temporary disability insurance to its members. Recently it secured agreements with other racing corporations, but CDI announced earlier this year that it will not contribute in 2012. CDI previously made regular annual payments of $330,000 on behalf of its four tracks, said Terry Meyocks, the national manager for the Jockey’s Guild.

Now, 250 jockeys have signed a petition asking CDI to reconsider. The announcement was made Friday at Louisville’s Galt House. Many guild members rely on the guild for support, said Meyocks who was joined by several jockeys, some in wheelchairs.

“Some of the active members do very well and they have their own disability policies in place. But maybe the top ten percent can afford it. Again for most of these people, they don’t have the money,” said Meyocks.

In 2010, around 18 percent of guild members were out no temporary disability, he said.

Officials for CDI told WFPL the corporation already contributes on-track accident insurance up to $1 million and CDI doesn’t employ the jockeys.

But some racing corporations have decided to continue contributions. The New York Racing Association just renewed its commitment to the guild, and Meyocks says all tracks should invest in the jockeys.