§ 8. Mr. Peter Freeman
asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he has considered the Report of his Departmental Committee on Licences, in reference to the issue of licences under Section 7 of the Veterinary Surgeons Act; and what action he proposes to take in the matter to restrict the number of people permitted to give treatment to animals and perform minor operations.
§ Sir T. Dugdale
I assume that the hon. Member is referring to the Report of the Committee, under the chairmanship of the hon. Member for Derbyshire, South-East (Mr. Champion) set up to advise me on problems raised by certain applications for licences under Section 7 of the Veterinary Surgeons Act, 1948. I have accepted the recommendations of the Committee and am in touch with the animal welfare societies concerned with 1732 regard to their implementation particularly the recommendation relating to the employment of veterinary surgeons part-time.
§ Mr. Freeman
Will the right hon. Gentleman confirm that no action taken under his regulations will in any way place a restriction upon people at any time helping sick or injured animals or birds when it is within their means or power to do so?
§ Sir T. Dugdale
The Report was published some months ago and we have since had consultations with various bodies. The Report is now public property. I have accepted its recommendations, and there has not been any undue delay.
§ Mr. Harold Davies
Might not the treatment of animals by unqualified people be eliminated if the Government established a national veterinary service which would enable the small farmer to obtain qualified services?