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From The Socialist newspaper, 7 March 2018

Hands Off HRI campaign group meets Corbyn and Ashworth

Marching to save the NHS, photo by Socialist Party

Marching to save the NHS, photo by Socialist Party   (Click to enlarge)

Matt Hirst, Huddersfield Socialist Party and Hands Off HRI campaign

40 hardy souls from the Hands Off HRI campaign braved the bitterly cold and snowy weather at 6am to climb aboard a coach from Huddersfield to London to meet with Jeremy Corbyn and shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth on 28 February. We had a local ITV journalist with us to report on the day, and the BBC also showed footage of the campaigners in local news.

On the way in to the Houses of Parliament, the police advised us that our campaign clothing was to be covered up as there were to be "no political messages" in Westminster. I wondered what our representative MPs do on a day to day basis, are they not allowed to be political when in session?

Members of the campaign steering group then met Corbyn and Ashworth to request the following five things from a Labour government:

Corbyn has now vowed to throw his political weight behind our efforts to block the downgrading of Huddersfield's hospital. Following the meeting he and Jonathan Ashworth said they "unequivocally" backed the campaign to save the A&E and a host of other hospital services. Corbyn also agreed to back the NHS Reinstatement Bill.

Following this, we then held a small march from outside Westminster to the Department of Health. As many readers of the Socialist will be aware, the decision to close our hospital has been referred to Jeremy Hunt and the Independent Reconfiguration Panel (IRP).

We had a small (but noisy!) rally outside and the Hands Off HRI secretary, Mike Forster, was interviewed by several news outlets. We then delegated a member of the campaign, Helen Robinson, to deliver the 15,000 names on petitions we have been collecting over the last few months to demand that the IRP conduct a full review of the plans to close our 400-bed hospital.

The IRP will be making a decision on whether to rubber stamp the plans to do this, or to conduct a full review. The IRP certainly now knows that the people of Huddersfield want to keep their hospital open!

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In The Socialist 7 March 2018:


What we think

May's EU speech kicks the can down the road


Socialist Party news and analysis

NHS: public health - not private profit

Snow chaos showed the bosses' coldness - but also workers' grit

Toys R Us, Maplin: worsening retail crisis claims more jobs

Them & Us


International Women's Day 2018

Capitalism oppresses women - fight for socialism!

Women's oppression: the struggle goes on

The Socialist inbox: International Women's Day


Socialist Party workplace news

UCU strike: bosses on the run

National lecturers' pension strike continues

Whole lotta shakin' goin' on in Merseyside DOO dispute

PCS: Re-elect the left and fight for decent pay

Hull workers united against bosses

FCC Environment strike solid


International socialist news and analysis

Syria: No ceasefire for 'hell on earth' eastern Goutha

Japan - toxic legacy of the Fukushima disaster


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Salford nurseries consultation delayed

Donate to the Socialist Party building fund

Hands Off HRI campaign group meets Corbyn and Ashworth

TUSC plans to stand on Waltham Forest anti-monster block platform

Derbyshire says: No fracking way!

Coventry shows solidarity with the Syrian people


Socialist Party comments and reviews

Fighting sexual harassment in entertainment

The Socialist inbox


 

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Related links:

Huddersfield:

triangleRacist attack in Huddersfield

triangleStand up against abuse - justice not racism

triangleCampaign building to save Scarborough and district hospitals

triangleSave Huddersfield Royal Infirmary - the fight goes on

triangleHuddersfield campaigners keep their powder dry

NHS:

triangleHealth bosses move goalposts on A&E waiting times: more funds for our NHS now!

triangleFighting NHS and fire services cuts and closures in Merseyside

Hospital:

triangleKing George A&E faces closure again

triangleThousands march against overnight closure of Shropshire A&E

triangleAnother victory against NHS privatisation

Westminster:

triangleWestminster sexual harassment scandal

triangleWestminster sexual harassment scandal: symptom of a rotten system

Health:

triangleSan Francisco Bay Area's toxic smoke crisis and capitalism's mismanagement

Parliament:

triangleSocialist Party members and supporters outside parliament demanding a general election, 11.12.18 , photo by Ra Ragavan

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