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From The Socialist newspaper, 5 December 2018

Fighting NHS and fire services cuts and closures in Merseyside

Arrowe Park Hospital

Arrowe Park Hospital   (Click to enlarge)

Jack Yarlett, Wirral Socialist Party

Wirral Socialist Party organised a meeting on 21 November along with members of the Fire Brigades Union (FBU), Wirral Trade Union Council and Defend our NHS to build a campaign to defend local public services. Five walk-in centres on the Wirral, Merseyside are currently faced with closure, in addition to a local fire station which is under threat of being reduced to daytime operation only from the beginning of 2019.

Sixty people attended including trade unionists and many ordinary people coming to a meeting of this kind for the first time, reflecting the outrage among people on the Wirral against these vicious cuts.

The meeting was called under the name of the 'Whoops' campaign: Wirral Hands Off Our Public Services.

Five walk-in centres across Wirral are set to be closed relocating services to Arrowe Park Hospital. This will make 'walking in' to these vital services not possible for many people. Four walk-in centres are also under threat in Liverpool.

These cuts are being carried out by a clinical commissioning group, under the guise of 'simplifying' healthcare provision and making it 'less complicated' for people to see a doctor and be treated by putting all services in one place. In reality this is the same justification used up and down the country to cut health services and make them ripe for privatisation.

Mark Rowe, FBU regional secretary, emphasised the connection between the fight to keep Wirral's walk-in centres open and the fight to protect fire stations from overnight closure. Socialist Party member Dave Jones linked the need for solidarity between the struggle against NHS and fire service cuts, with local industrial disputes, such as at Merseyrail and at the Cammell Lairds ship-building plant in Birkenhead.

Already our campaign has created so much pressure that Wirral Borough Council has announced its opposition to these closures. We plan to protest on 8 December, outside the Miriam walk-in centre in Birkenhead at 11am and march to the town hall.

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In The Socialist 5 December 2018:


What we think

Corbyn and trade union movement urgently need to fight for a general election to kick out the Tories


International socialist news and analysis

France: mass demonstrations force president to back down

Midwives go on strike in New Zealand


Socialist Party feature

The growth of artificial intelligence technology


Workplace news and analysis

PCS AGS election: Where now after the PCS Left Unity conference?

Blairite Birmingham steps up union-busting and two workforces plan strikes

Victory! Grimethorpe dinner ladies' strike beats job cuts

Victory for left in RMT union president election

WHSmith: hands off our Post Offices!

Bradford College joins #FEfightback strike for decent pay

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party news and analysis

Austerity: not one more day - Tories out now

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

Northamptonshire council crisis continues

Arrogant landlords can be beaten

Fatal bus crash - an avoidable tragedy

Racist attack in Huddersfield


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Fight Cardiff Council's school cuts

Join the march through Woking against austerity

Fighting NHS and fire services cuts and closures in Merseyside

Socialist Party argues against fire service cuts at Tyne and Wear consultation

Leeds TUC conference to organise fight against austerity

West Midlands Socialist Party women's meeting: our role in changing society

Socialist Students conference date set


 

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Related links:

Merseyside:

triangleWirral Tories raise spectre of Militant

triangleStrike action saves jobs at Cammell Laird shipyard

triangleCammell Laird shipbuilding workers strike against job cuts on merseyside

triangleCammell Lairds shipbuilding workers walk out

triangleGuards move closer to beating driver-only operation

NHS:

triangleCharging scandal in Warrington and Halton NHS Trust

triangleMidlands mental health workers walk out against privatisation

triangleCaerphilly Socialist Party: The threat to the NHS from capitalist trade deals

triangleNewton Abbot says no to Tory privatisation of the NHS!

Fire:

triangleStop the Devon and Somerset fire service cuts

triangleAngry Barking fire victims demand action from landlords and authorities

triangleAngry residents' meeting demands answers and action following fire

Cuts:

triangleHarrogate academy workers strike against cuts

triangleUnsafe, unaffordable housing scandal: reverse council cuts, build council homes!

Closures:

triangleFight the closures save every job!

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