Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/articles/18237

Posted on 3 March 2014 at 14:30 GMT

NHS cuts: Anger explodes onto the streets of Halifax

Mike Forster

Last week, the Calderdale and Greater Huddersfield NHS Trust announced a public 'consultation' on the future of Accident and Emergency provision in the area. They have put forward five proposals, most of which will see either Huddersfield or Calderdale A&E closed, although one of the more 'radical' ideas is to shut them both!

The Trust favours the closure of Calderdale A&E but is now obliged to engage in a four month consultation. Experienced activists know from other campaigns that the Trust will use every trick and argument in the book to get its way and only mass, united and determined resistance will stop it. It is therefore crucial that such a campaign is built now.

The combined population of the Calderdale and Huddersfield area is 750,000 and there is absolutely no way one A&E department can service everyone without tragedies along the way. This will be a matter of life and death for many critically ill patients.

Campaign preparation

Anticipating the announcement, activists from 38 degrees, Unison, Keep Our NHS Public, Save Our Services and Socialist Party members have been mobilising to defeat these disgraceful proposals. Several meetings were held at the beginning of the year and an outline plan put in place in anticipation of last week's announcement.

At least we weren't taken by surprise, and were able to get straight out on the streets. In reality Socialist Party members have been out since the beginning of the year and we had already collected over 600 names in opposition even before it went public.

Last Saturday six of us hit the streets with two stalls, assisted by volunteers from 38 Degrees. Even then, we could not cope with the wave of public interest and anger. Despite having eight petition boards, we were still swamped and could not keep up with the punters coming to the stall, sometimes three deep. People took away petitions to get filled in; they took away bundles of leaflets to spread the word and our sign-up sheet of willing activists soon swelled. We sold out of copies of the Socialist and collected 50 in donations.

A public meeting has been called for Saturday 29 March to launch the campaign with speakers from the community and wider labour movement; already 500 flyers have gone out and email groups are buzzing - this will be a huge gathering which will shake the Trust's apparent complacency about their ideas.

Initiatives taken

While running the stalls, people were telling us of a demo taking place to save the A&E in two weeks' time which had been organised on Facebook. Twenty minutes later the organiser of the group, a student from the local college, came to join us in handing out leaflets.

Anger and activity is literally springing up from below everywhere. The main task facing the campaign will be to coordinate and organise this anger into one huge movement, but it will be without any doubt one of the biggest protest movements in Halifax since the days of the poll tax. Even the local Labour MP approached us to ask if we could work together on the campaign and agrees that only thousands on the streets can defeat the plan.

A parallel campaign is developing in Huddersfield and we will ensure that the two groups work together to stop any potential disunity. There is a feeling that things have now gone too far and people are saying in their hundreds that they want to get involved. To follow the campaign, log onto http://www.unisonyh-action.org.uk/calderdale_campaign

Public Meeting: Saturday 29th March, Halifax Leisure Centre 12.30pm


This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 3 March 2014 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.






Related links:

Halifax:

triangleThem & Us

triangleHuddersfield and Halifax Socialist Party: The origins of the Second World War

triangleHuddersfield and Halifax Socialist Party: Marxism and War

triangleHuddersfield and Halifax Socialist Party: Russia Today

triangleHuddersfield and Halifax Socialist Party: How Stalin came to power - and what he stood for

NHS:

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

triangleStop press: victory - campaign saves NHS rehab ward

triangleWe can win the fight for the NHS

triangleTrump v NHS

Cuts:

triangleBradford Socialist Party: A strategy to defeat the cuts

triangleScene set for TUSC conference electoral debate

triangleHaringey: now's our chance for a no-cuts council

Huddersfield:

triangleKirklees council opens consultation of library services

triangle'Hands around HRI' to save Huddersfield A&E

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

19/2/18

Walthamstow

Building the campaign against clearances of the working class

16/2/18

Haringey

No fudge with the right wing

15/2/18

TUSC

TUSC statement on sentencing of Derby TUSC agent

14/2/18

Haringey

Haringey protests HDV - but Labour fails to kill it off completely

14/2/18

UCU

Uni strike: coordinate public sector fightback

14/2/18

Cardiff

Enjoyable and successful Cardiff Refugee Rights gig

14/2/18

Carlisle

Carlisle debate - socialism or social democracy?

14/2/18

Firefighters

Staines fire services saved

14/2/18

Surrey

Threat of action defeats pay cut at Surrey council

14/2/18

Woolwich

Woolwich Crossrail walkouts to demand promised bonuses

14/2/18

London

Sadiq Khan's bus drivers' London licence doesn't go far enough

14/2/18

Mansfield

Stop press: victory - campaign saves NHS rehab ward

8/2/18

Newham

Teachers strike again as anti-academy pressure mounts

7/2/18

Unison

Unison national women's conference

7/2/18

Royal Mail

Royal Mail forced back under threat of action

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

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

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

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0191 421 6230

North West 07769 611 320

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


February 2018

January 2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999