Accountability from the RCVS
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We the undersigned request the RCVS review their procedure and scope in relation to complaints from members of the public against veterinary surgeons.
Currently the RCVS follow the Veterinary Surgeons Act of 1966 an act that is 50 years old and outdated.
Owners of pets and livestock are governed by the Animal Welfare Act 2006, a far more modern approach to the welfare of animals.
In 2017 we find it to be an injustice that an act of cruelty against an animal under the 2006 act for a member of the public is a criminal offence, however under the 1966 act a veterinary surgeon can take the same action and not be accountable.
There is a black hole between the two acts and fundamentally they are like chalk and cheese.
We believe when the RCVS receive a complaint from a member of the public, the complaint should be investigated under the newer of the two acts, if after investigation it is found the complaint falls outside the jurisdiction of the RCVS, protocol should be in place to either refer the complaint directly to the RSPCA and or the police.
We the public see the RCVS as a last resort when things go wrong and look to them for accountability, sadly even when it is clear laws have been broken under the 2006 act currently the RCVS take no action.
This has to change.
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