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From The Socialist newspaper, 1 February 2007

NHS

Protests must reflect people's anger

AT LONG last, the London NHS Together campaign has announced its event for the national day of action to defend the NHS on 3 March. Unfortunately, they are only planning an indoor afternoon rally at Friends Meeting House, Euston.

Lois Austin

Regular readers of the socialist will know of the disappointment many activists felt when the health trade unions said they would not call a national demonstration on this day, but regional activity instead.

This was despite the PUSH campaign calling a 3 March national demonstration in London.

Health campaigners around the country felt hugely let down by the union leaders' decision.

The Socialist Party, along with others, has campaigned to get it reversed and a national demonstration called.

In some cities regional events have now been planned. We must ensure that they are a huge show of strength and fully reflect the anger at devastating NHS cuts, closures and job losses. The decision to hold just another indoor rally in London on 3 March is disappointing and reflects how the health trade union leaders are trying to prevent a demonstration on London's streets.

The Socialist Party will propose to the London Keep our NHS Public campaign that it organises, along with others, a march to the NHS Together rally in Euston.

Such a demonstration could act as another staging post in the struggle to get a national demonstration.

It would also be an event that campaigners and trade union branches outside of London can come to.

Another crucial next step to escalate the campaign should be a national meeting, possibly in March, of all those trade unionists and health campaigners who want a national demonstration.

If a meeting such as this was truly reflective of the feeling around the country and represented fighting trade union branches and campaigns, it would have the authority to call a national demonstration shortly after the local elections in May.

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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.

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In The Socialist 1 February 2007:

Private hands off our health service

NHS: Protests must reflect people's anger

NHS union attacked in Brighton


Workplace news

Striking for jobs and services

BA bosses make concessions


Socialist Students

Mass action can defeat fees

Building for the protests


Socialist Party news and analysis

Gay adoption: Christian hierarchy attacks equal rights

Reid's prison disaster

Review: Silent Accomplice


Northern Ireland

Sinn Fein's major U-turn


War and terrorism

Iraq - build for 24 February demo

Lewisham leads the way


International socialist news and analysis

CWI rally: An inspiring international meeting

CWI World Congress: Building the forces of socialism worldwide

Sri Lanka: Defend socialists under attack

Bolivia: Mass protests demand right-wing Prefect's resignation


Workplace news

Power industry: Fight this victimisation

Sacked electricians fight on

BP condemned over safety standards

Support the Unique Care workers

Southampton care workers on strike

National meeting on Single Status


 

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Related links:

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