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From The Socialist newspaper, 4 April 2007

NHS meeting

Frustration at demo delay

HEALTH GROUP People United Saving Hospitals (PUSH) campaigners met in Coventry on 31 March. The meeting heard reports of yet more privatisation and cuts at hospitals and PCTs around the country and of local struggles in defence of the NHS which in some cases are winning victories or delaying cuts for the time being.

However, there was frustration that yet again UNISON has delayed calling a national demonstration. Instead of a June/July demonstration that activists were expecting we now have to wait until October. The meeting agreed to complain to UNISON for putting off a national demonstration when services are at risk of closure now.

The meeting also agreed to organise a national protest event in central London on the NHS anniversary day, Thursday 5 July. PUSH organisers will be contacting other campaigns like Keep our NHS Public, trade union branches and pensioners' organisations to join in with this protest.

This won't be the national demonstration we wanted for the summer, but it will be an important event which takes this vital message to the heart of government - lay off our NHS! A protest on the NHS anniversary day will also be an important staging post in the run-up to a national demonstration in October.

Lois Austin

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In The Socialist 4 April 2007:

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