Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page:

Posted on 22 July 2013 at 14:47 GMT

Stop the destruction of the NHS in East London

Save Whipps Cross, Barts, Newham and the Royal London

Paula Mitchell, London Socialist Party

Barts Health Trust in East London, Britain's biggest NHS hospital trust, has announced it is losing 2m a week.

This could mean severe cuts at Barts hospital itself, the Royal London in Whitechapel, Newham General and Whipps Cross in Waltham Forest. Services at Whipps Cross hospital are thought to be especially at risk.

The trust is bringing in a "turnaround" team, to "tackle its financial problems" to avoid going into administration.

Anyone who works in the public sector knows what this means - massive cuts to jobs and services.

The Care Quality Commission says the trust poses a danger to patients in several areas.

But if you read between the lines its clear what is happening.

The trust says it is having to make the biggest savings in the NHS, with 30m having to be saved this year alone.

It is saddled with a massive PFI (private finance initiative) deal to rebuild the old Royal London.

The NHS bosses clearly want to make massive cuts to avoid being the second trust to go into administration, following the debacle at South London.

When the trusts merged last year, when Barts and the London Trust took over Newham and Whipps Cross, Socialist Party members warned that this merger would likely be a prelude to cuts.

How to fight?

Unfortunately around the country many Unison branches in the NHS are under the control of the right wing in the union and do not put up much of a fight.

However, this is not the case with Whipps Cross Unison, which on the portering and ancillary side is led by Socialist Party member Len Hockey.

The branch has organised big campaigns, decisive action and achieved victories over years.

The Whipps Cross Unison branch will be reaching out to the unison branches and members in the other hospitals to build a united campaign.

It is no coincidence that the trust has chosen this time to attack the branch chair, Charlotte Monro.

Previous attacks on branch secretary Len Hockey have been beaten back by a mobilisation of the workforce, and the branch has already agreed a plan of action to defend itself against this attack.

The workers understand that if the branch leadership at Whipps is removed, the attacks will be able to be carried out more easily across the whole trust.

Whipps Cross Unison has agreed to call a public meeting and a demonstration.

Community campaigns have been important in many areas of the country, especially where union organisation has been weak.

However, here, at Whipps, is one of the most militant union organisations in the NHS. Community campaigning will be a vital part of this battle, bringing the community and users of the NHS together with the workforce. But it is important here that the workers in the hospital take a lead.

It is they who ultimately have the power to take decisive action, including strike action, which, with the community behind them, could be able to beat these cuts back.

We have to also sound a word of warning: let no one try to put appeasing MPs (and be warned - it's not just Labour MPs in this area - the hated Ian Duncan Smith is MP for Chingford) ahead of the vital importance of mobilising the workforce.

Everyone is welcome to play their part and the support of MPs can add to a campaign, but all the main parties are culpable in the decimation of the NHS through PFI and we should have no illusions that any of them will reverse the cuts and privatisation in the NHS.

This, in fact, is why some workers at both Whipps Cross and Royal London are planning to stand as candidates for the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition in the local elections next May.

Donate to the Socialist Party

Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation


Your message: 


Related links:

East London:

triangleEast London cleaners fight outsourcing and redundancies

triangleBeal academy strikers demand equal sick pay

triangleGoodlord workers continue all-out strike

triangleGoodlord workers continue strike against 'fire and rehire'

triangleEast London Socialist Party: A fighting programme for women's rights and socialism


triangleCovid inquiry? Workers must decide

triangleNHS pay: reject Tories' miserly 1% 'offer' - Fight for full 15% rise

trianglePay NHS staff 15%

triangleNHS pay: 15% now!


triangleWaltham Forest TUSC: On 6 May - Use your vote to fight education cuts

triangleLondon housing crisis: vote TUSC to fight back

triangleTUSC: Launching a working-class electoral alternative in London

Whipps Cross:

triangleObituary - Jeff Edwards

triangleAdding demands to the weekly claps


triangleTyneside Socialist Party: Our TUSC against cuts electoral challenge


triangleUnison NEC elections: United left challenge needed to fight slaughter of jobs and services


triangleCumberland hospital workers fight for stolen pay

Len Hockey:

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

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns



Latest podcast: PCS elections - the struggle for fighting trade unionism



Workers strike and protest


Socialist Students

Students in action: Protest on 21 April


Socialist Party

Why you should join the Socialist Party



Cardiff: Hundreds protest to free Siyanda



Worcester: Kill the Bill


Fighting Fund

Fighting fund target smashed. Can we do it again?



Youth under attack



St Mungo's maintenance workers on indefinite strike



Thousands of London bus workers strike across multiple companies



Rally for sacked RMT rep Declan


East London

East London cleaners fight outsourcing and redundancies



Bristol Water workers walk out



SPS Technologies workers end strike after management backs down



London: #BuhariMustGo protests are back

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube



Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: [email protected]

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 075 4018 9052

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 078 0983 9793



Alphabetical listing

April 2021

March 2021

February 2021

January 2021