§ 28. Mr. KELLY
asked the Minister of Health whether he is aware that over four years ago Miss Maud Wiese was, on the nomination of the Asylum Workers' Union, elected a member of the General Nursing Council as a representative of working nurses; that recently Miss Wiese resigned from the council and a matron was co-opted in her place; and whether, in view of the provision in the schedule to The Nurses Registration Act, 1919, that in co-opting a. member to fill a vacancy the council shall, so far as practicable, select a person who is representative of the same interests as those represented by the vacating member, and that a representative of working nurses was nominated by the Asylum Workers' Union to fill the vacancy, he can take any steps to have the matter reconsidered and the vaca,ncy filled in accordance with the Act?
I understand that Miss Wiese was elected by the nurses on the Supplementary Part of the Register for Mental Nurses, having been nominated not by any Union, but by registered nurses in accordance with the 2250 rules governing election to the Council. Her successor who is also a mental nurse was co-opted by the Council as representing the same interests and their selection does not appear to be in any way inconsistent with the schedule. In any case, however, I have no jurisdiction to intervene.
§ Miss WILKINSON
Is the right hon. Gentleman not aware that the recent Report of the Select Committee on Nursing made a very strong recommendation that the balance between matrons and working nurses should be maintained; the whole point is that it is a matron who is co-opted rather than a working nurse, and this destroys the balance suggested by the Select Committee.
That is not the point raised in the question, and I can only repeat that I have no jurisdiction in the matter.
§ Mr. KELLY
Does the right hon. Gentleman realise that this question is in keeping with the supplementary question put by my hon. Friend, that is, to maintain the balance which has been suggested.
No, Sir. The hon. Member's question, as I understood it, suggested that in order to comply with the Schedule, the council ought to have co-opted someone nominated by some particular union, and I have endeavoured to show in my answer that that is not the case.
§ Mr. KELLY
Is the right hon. Gentleman not aware that the point of asking for representation from that quarter is to have the particular interests of mental nurses represented?