My Lords, I am delighted that I was asked by my right honourable friend Sir Oliver Heald, Member of Parliament for North East Hertfordshire, to take this Bill through your Lordships’ House. I give great credit to my right honourable friend for supporting Finn’s cause and, with his customary doggedness and skill, successfully steering the Bill through all its stages in another place. The Bill will make it easier to prosecute people, under the Animal Welfare Act 2006, who are suspected of causing unnecessary suffering to service animals, chiefly police dogs and horses, and dogs working for the Prison Service. Our Second Reading debate showed that the Bill received unqualified support from all sides of the House. I am sure that all noble Lords will agree that it is most reassuring that there are indeed matters on which we all unreservedly can agree.
I also congratulate PC Dave Wardell, along with Sarah Dixon and her colleagues on the Finn’s law team, on their successful campaign which led to the introduction of the Bill. Lastly, I thank my noble friend Lord Gardiner and his officials for supporting the Bill and for the assistance that they have provided me throughout this process.