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From The Socialist newspaper, 3 March 2011

Coalition steps up assault on NHS

RECENTLY, THE anti-cuts website False Economy published its findings from NHS Trusts which showed that well over 50,000 health workers' jobs will be axed. These job losses, as well as hospital A&E, ward and department closures, show that David Cameron's general election pledge, that spending on NHS services would be protected by the government, is just hogwash.
Roger Davey, Unison health executive (writing in a personal capacity), explains how the NHS is being systematically destroyed by the government, and what is needed to fight this assault on our health services.

Nobody should underestimate the scale and nature of the coalition government's attack on the NHS. If these proposals are implemented we will see the dismantling, destruction and eventual privatisation of the NHS. It will mean the end of free comprehensive care, and a significant move towards a US-style system.

This programme of privatisation was, of course, begun under the previous Labour government. However, the combining of an acceleration of privatisation with the biggest financial cuts in NHS history will result in a huge wave of ward closures and mass redundancies.

The government's proposals include:

All of this would lead to the growing domination of multinational companies in the provision of health. Increasingly these profit hungry giants will take over FTs and other former NHS organisations.

However, the government will face enormous opposition from NHS workers and the wider community in trying to implement this programme.

If the health unions lead an effective opposition the government can certainly be defeated. Unison members are prepared to fight in defence of the NHS and their pay and conditions. That is why the Unison health executive, feeling the pressure from below, overwhelmingly voted to oppose the Unison leadership's attempt to sign up to a completely inadequate deal.

We now have to harness the anger of Unison members in order to organise a struggle to defeat the government's plans. The first step is for a massive mobilisation of health workers to the TUC demo on 26 March. This needs to be a step towards a one-day public sector general strike in opposition to all cuts and privatisation.

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In The Socialist 3 March 2011:


Anti-cuts campaign

Stop the cuts

Marching on the Con-Dem conferences in Wales

Fighting the cuts: Thousands protest, lobby and occupy

Lewisham election: There is an alternative!

Determination to beat the cuts


International socialist news

Fantastic results in Irish election: Socialists and lefts gain five seats

Elections see collapse of Fianna Fail, the traditional establishment party


Socialist Party news and analysis

Coalition steps up assault on NHS

Westminster: Save our children's services

Who 'agrees with Nick' now?

News in brief


Socialist Party workplace news

Largest protest yet against Wisconsin Governor's anti-union bill

Unison witch-hunt: Reinstate the Four!

End the blacklist

Workplace news in brief


Youth fight for jobs

Jarrow to London: March for jobs

CWU youth conference 'ready and willing to take action'


Socialist Party women

International Women's Day 2011: Women and the fightback


Socialist Party congress 2011

Socialist Party 2011 congress - a party growing in strength


International socialist news and analysis

Libya: A fight to the finish

Tunisia: Revolution and counter-revolution on the streets


Marxist analysis: history

Liverpool 1983-87: the council that fought Thatcher


 

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Related links:

NHS:

triangleNottingham hospital black alert

triangleTories raid 1bn from NHS facilities budget - unions must act

triangleChatsworth ward victory shows we can save our NHS

triangleNorth London Socialist Party: Save our NHS - the lessons of the Barts strike

triangleStop press: victory - campaign saves NHS rehab ward

Health:

triangleTragic death exposes criminal understaffing of NHS

triangleNHS - build the fightback

triangleLeicester NHS protest

triangleLabour NHS rally reveals horrors but offers no way forward

Unison:

triangleThreat of action defeats pay cut at Surrey council

triangleUnison national women's conference

triangleLocal government workers' reps reject 2% pay offer

Privatisation:

triangleNorthants council crisis - protesters demand an end to cuts and privatisation

triangleWe can win the fight for the NHS

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