The Socialist

The Socialist 28 September 2011

Mass strikes can kick out Con-Dems

The Socialist issue 687

Mass strikes can kick out Con-Dems


Marching for a future

Join the Jarrow marchers on their 330 mile journey!

Why are you marching?

Why are you supporting the march?

Jarrow march - council puts high price on right to protest


World economy in meltdown - we won't pay for capitalist crisis

Pro-business Labour offers crumbs and promises cuts


1911 - Bermondsey women's uprising


6,000 uni fees? An offer we can refuse!

Fight fees and cuts - join Socialist Students!

Youth demand a future in Tottenham

What I spent my EMA on


As Murdochgate scandal goes on - release Tommy Sheridan!

Scotland: SNP do the Con-Dems' dirty work

Dale Farm - call off the evictions of residents

Metal thefts - The hidden crime of capitalism

Socialism 2011: A weekend of discussion and debate

News in brief


As debt crisis deepens... Greek workers and youth in revolt


Construction workers strike to defend agreements

Greenwich Unite takes fight to cuts councillors

Workplace news in brief


PFI schemes - a national scandal

Salford says: Save Lancaster House!

Stop coastguard cuts!

Stroud demo against private sharks killing the NHS


Film review: Tinker tailor soldier spy


My impressions of the Work Programme

More whacko ideas from Tories

Standing up for our pension rights

 
 

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Demo against NHS privatisation, Stroud, 24.9.11, photo Chris Lamb

Demo against NHS privatisation, Stroud, 24.9.11, photo Chris Lamb   (Click to enlarge)

Stroud demo against private sharks killing the NHS

Chris Moore, Gloucestershire Socialist Party

To the chants of: 'We're sick of Con-Dem lies, they said they wouldn't privatise'; 'Whose NHS? Our NHS'; 'Join the union, join the fight, support the public sector strike'; 500 people marched through Stroud in Gloucestershire on Saturday 24 September demanding a publicly owned NHS.

Private health companies like Care UK, Bondcare Medical Services, Assura Medical and many more are circling the NHS like sharks smelling blood, as the Con-Dem government attempts to rip our health service apart.

The management of NHS Gloucestershire is facing rising opposition from staff and the public across the county to their plans to transfer 4,000 staff, nine community hospitals and many services to a Social Enterprise Trust (SET) or Community Interest Company (CIC).

It is claimed that 1 shares will mean more staff involvement, that profits will be reinvested and that services won't change.

But a few days ago the flagship social enterprise, Central Surrey Health, set up in 2006 and a Big Society award winner in 2010, had to compete for the first time against other bidders for service contracts.

Health visiting, eight community hospitals, prison healthcare and other services worth 90 million a year will now be run by the private company Assura Medical.

Our NHS is also under threat of destruction from the Health and Social Care Bill, which removes all barriers to privatisation. It ends the Health Secretary's legal duty to deliver comprehensive care to patients.

Chilvers McCrea has just stopped providing GP services in Southend because it's not making enough money.

Care UK and Assura Medical have the largest number of contracts to run large health centres. But Assura is selling off its primary care business to Virgin Healthcare because it failed to produce enough profit. Our NHS has never been more at risk and exposed.

Demo against NHS privatisation, Stroud, 24.9.11, Chris Lamb

Demo against NHS privatisation, Stroud, 24.9.11, Chris Lamb   (Click to enlarge)

The demonstration was addressed by Stroud's former Labour MP, opposing 'social enterprise', but it was his government that championed the policy.

Patricia Hewitt when Health Secretary in 2006 said social enterprises had 'the ability to create wealth and employment and could play a greater role in future delivery of public services.'

Labour also encouraged the private sector to run Independent Treatment Centres, brought in Private Finance Initiatives that mean we're paying 50 billion for 11 billion worth of buildings and set up Foundation Trusts that will suck in private patients and funding.

Stroud Against Cuts has also launched a legal action to hold up NHS services transferring to a CIC on 1st October.

This can give more time to organise an effective campaign involving trade unions and anti-cuts groups. NHS staff in Gloucestershire have never been balloted about the transfer.

When Unison in eastern region faced a similar situation they organised protests and campaigned to force a ballot which rejected SET.

In Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin and South Bedfordshire, health trade unions successfully campaigned against SET.

A national demonstration and coordinated industrial action to defend the NHS is long overdue. A determined campaign, including a 24-hour public sector strike, is desperately needed to stop the private sharks killing our NHS and public services.


This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 26 September 2011 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist.


In this issue


Building for 30 November strike

Mass strikes can kick out Con-Dems


Jarrow march for jobs

Marching for a future

Join the Jarrow marchers on their 330 mile journey!

Why are you marching?

Why are you supporting the march?

Jarrow march - council puts high price on right to protest


The Socialist's editorials

World economy in meltdown - we won't pay for capitalist crisis

Pro-business Labour offers crumbs and promises cuts


Socialist history

1911 - Bermondsey women's uprising


Socialist Party youth and students

6,000 uni fees? An offer we can refuse!

Fight fees and cuts - join Socialist Students!

Youth demand a future in Tottenham

What I spent my EMA on


Socialist Party news and analysis

As Murdochgate scandal goes on - release Tommy Sheridan!

Scotland: SNP do the Con-Dems' dirty work

Dale Farm - call off the evictions of residents

Metal thefts - The hidden crime of capitalism

Socialism 2011: A weekend of discussion and debate

News in brief


International socialist news and analysis

As debt crisis deepens... Greek workers and youth in revolt


Socialist Party workplace news

Construction workers strike to defend agreements

Greenwich Unite takes fight to cuts councillors

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

PFI schemes - a national scandal

Salford says: Save Lancaster House!

Stop coastguard cuts!

Stroud demo against private sharks killing the NHS


Socialist Party review

Film review: Tinker tailor soldier spy


Readers' comments

My impressions of the Work Programme

More whacko ideas from Tories

Standing up for our pension rights


 

Home   |   The Socialist 28 September 2011   |   Join the Socialist Party

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