Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/466/1824
Building the national day of action
THE CAMPAIGN to stop cuts in the NHS in Waltham Forest, east London is developing daily. Thousands of people have signed our petitions to save Whipps Cross hospital and defend community health services. We're out campaigning at least twice a week all over the borough.
Last week one supporter, Harry, explained how he'd tackled local Labour MP Neil Gerrard. He's trying to jump on the "Save Whipps Cross" bandwagon and even produced "I love Whipps Cross" posters!
"I went up to Gerrard's stall and asked him why he says he's campaigning for Whipps Cross, when it's his government that's making all the cuts in the first place," Harry told us. "Gerrard didn't have much of an answer."
Unbelievably, the Tories are also trying to tag along with the campaign. Chingford MP Iain Duncan-Smith appeared at a few protest meetings. A bit rich, seeing the Tories introduced the 'market' into the health service in the first place.
But our campaign is based around the people who really have the power to stop these cuts and closures - the working class.
On 15 December we're encouraging people to join in a lunchtime protest outside their workplaces. The local National Union of Teachers has written to every school asking union members to do this. UNISON has asked library workers to do the same and the hospital trade unions are organising a protest at the hospital.
Every area should do the same - wherever we can contact trade union members. It's a simple thing but it will give workers an opportunity to say: "Hands off our NHS". This will then put more pressure on the trade union leaders to organise national action.
In The Socialist 7 December 2006:
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