Mr. McKENZIE (Assiniboia):
I can believe that myself because I was a graduate of a veterinary college about thirty years ago and I do not know that I would care to re-register. But the thing that seems to annoy these veterinary surgeons is the fact that under present economic conditions they cannot afford to go to the expense of taking this short course. So far as tuberculosis work is concerned I do not think there is anything _ particular about it requiring any special examination, and I imagine that is the greater part of the work. Probably the minister has a copy of the memorandum that was passed at a meeting of the council of the Veterinary Association of Saskatchewan in February last. From the letter accompanying it I believe a copy was sent to practically every local member of the house as well as to the minister himself, but in case the minister has overlooked it I will just put it on Hansard so that we can see what is the feeling of the veterinary association. The memorandum reads;
1. To draw the attention of the minister to the fact that the men who passed the parttime examinations held last summer have as yet received no work from the health of
animals branch, in spite of the fact that a list of available men is in the hands of the civil service commission. Also to urge the minister to see that work is given to these men, when it is available, in their own districts, as soon as possible.
2. To suggest to the minister that the examinations for part-time veterinary surgeons held in future be partly oral if possible.
3. To ask the minister that tuberculosis testing be given to accredited veterinarians in their own districts whether they passed the part-time examinations or not as these men have already passed a special examination held by the health of animals branch in tuberculosis and tuberculosis eradication work, and are quite capable of doing the work.
4. To assure the minister of their continued support in his efforts to try out a system of state veterinary medicine and to ask him to put it into force along the lines suggested two or three years ago, as early as possible.
5. The council of the Veterinary Association of Saskatchewan hopes that the minister will call the meeting as soon as possible looking towards the formation of a Dominion-wide veterinary association. If necessary, Saskatchewan would finance its own delegate.
6. The economic condition of the veterinary surgeons in Saskatchewan is at a low ebb, many of them being unable to make calls any longer from inability to collect fees, which means that sick animals are often dying for the want of veterinary service; this is literally true. The council of the Veterinary Association of Saskatchewan considers that the above measures would materially help to remedy the situation.
The veterinary surgeons in my own district with whom I am well acquainted are finding it very hard under present conditions to make ends meet, and although this examination is probably being held for a quite laudable purpose, it seems to me that the test for tuberculosis, and probably other matters but particularly this test, could be carried on almost entirely by the local man. If it is found that he has become rusty, as the minister imagines, he probably would not be given any of the work, but at the same time, in order to keep these men in their particular districts, I would urge the minister to give them all the work it is possible to give them without the necessity of their taking these examinations.
Mr. WEIR (Melfort); I believe in Saskatchewan some seven out of the ten who passed the examination have been given work. No person, veterinary or anybody else, can give me any more enthusiasm than I have as regards the necessity of assisting private veterinaries, especially in western Canada, and every effort is being made to give them assistance and work because I feel that the veterinarian work has been one side of our live stock industry that has been receiving less care than it should because of the circumstances of which I have spoken before.
As regards the conference and our agreeing to pay the expenses of one, some two years ago I got in touch with the veterinary associations to discuss those problems with them and asked if we could have a dominion conference, but for some reason or another each of them named the same man as a delegate and it was a matter of practically this one man meeting with me. He could not speak with the authority of the veterinaries of each province nor on the problems I especially wished to discuss, that is from the practical veterinary point of view, because he had been a specialist and always engaged in research work institutions.