Animal Health and Welfare Board for England
The Animal Health and Welfare Board for England (AHWBE) brings together independent people with the relevant knowledge and skills, and senior government officials. The AHWBE makes direct recommendations to Defra Ministers on strategic policy affecting the health and welfare of kept animals in England including farm animals, horses and pets (excluding the welfare of zoo and circus animals).
- The AHWBE met on 9 April 2013 and a note of the meeting has been published
- The AHWBE published its first Annual Report on 19 April 2013
- The AHWBE met on 5 March 2013 and a note of the meeting has been published
The Board was created in 2011 based on the findings from the Independent Responsibility and Cost Sharing Advisory Group chaired by Rosemary Radcliffe, which published the findings of their work on how animal keepers can play a greater role on tackling animal disease.
The Board has strong communication links to stakeholder organisations so that their expertise, ideas and opinions inform the Board’s decisions. Its responsibilities include:
- setting the policy priorities;
- development of key policies and how they should be funded;
- assessing the risk of threats from animal disease and how to manage them;
- determining the surveillance and research priorities;
- reviewing and developing contingency plans for dealing with new disease outbreaks; and
- considering what, if any, charging mechanisms should be introduced.
Final decisions on animal health and welfare policy remain in the hands of government Ministers.