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From The Socialist newspaper, 17 July 2019
Halton campaigners force U-turn over NHS privatisation
Nurses marching for the NHS, photo Paul Mattsson (Click to enlarge)
Ste Armstrong, Warrington, St Helens and Halton Socialist Party
Working-class people in Halton are celebrating after NHS bosses were forced to abandon plans to hand the local urgent care contract to a private company. This followed a rapid and determined response by campaigners including local Socialist Party members.
The original plans were to include charging for elective operations like hip replacements and breast reductions (see - 'Charging scandal in Warrington and Halton NHS Trust').
What this amounts to is people 'choosing' to live in pain because they cannot afford operations which should be provided free.
This was quickly dropped, but shortly after it was announced that a "preferred bidder" for the urgent care had been found.
A coalition of Socialist Party members and other left-wing groups organised a rally outside Warrington and Halton Hospitals as well as other locations across Runcorn and Widnes, uniting the local community in opposition to these plans.
While we should welcome this small victory, we should be wary of the wording of the statement by the trust, which said that these services will continue to be provided by the NHS "in the interim".
The Socialist Party will continue to put pressure on the NHS, local politicians and the Tory government to announce a permanent end to the privatisation of healthcare provision in Halton and throughout the country.
We want a properly funded NHS that ensures treatment free for all, based on need and not on the ability to pay. And we fight for a socialist government which puts the needs of working-class people before profit and the rich.
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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 17 July 2019:
What we think
Stop Boris - general election now
Fraudsters thrive and claimants suffer in despicable Universal Credit scam
Wales: chronic NHS underfunding exposed
Them & Us
Imperial typewriters dispute
The 45th anniversary of the strike
NSSN conference 2019: at the heart of trade union struggle
Health visitors strike for the first time ever
Bradford NHS workers strike against privatisation
Victory for Stagecoach bus strikers!
Newham housing repairs workers announce strike dates
Council seeks to take budget deficit out on school staff and pupils
Moon landing 50 years on
50 years since Apollo 11 - 'One giant leap': how political conflict launched the moon landing
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Socialist change to end climate change
Residents mobilise to stop eviction
Stop the fire service cuts
Durham Miners' Gala
Campaigners force U-turn over NHS privatisation
Leicestershire - No more austerity!
Excellent response to building fund appeal
Socialist Party Fighting Fund
International socialist news and analysis
Greece elections: Syriza ousted amid voter disillusionment
Sudan masses mobilise against state repression
Interview: protests over killing in Israel
The Socialist Inbox
The Socialist 17 July 2019 |
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