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From The Socialist newspaper, 2 December 2020

NHS: Underfunded, understaffed, underpaid

We demand action now

Demanding a 15% pay rise for NHS workers, 8th August 2020

Demanding a 15% pay rise for NHS workers, 8th August 2020   (Click to enlarge)

Maggie Fricker, NHS worker, Southampton Socialist Party

Everyone on shift feels the Tories have been an unmitigated disaster in their handling of the pandemic, whatever they voted in the general election.

"No shit Sherlock" was the response to Chancellor Rishi Sunak's 'our health emergency is not yet over' statement. What an understatement! We are beyond angry with the Tories. Extra money? Do they think we are stupid? What they are promising us is a drop in the ocean compared to the eyewatering sums they have handed out to their big business friends for substandard PPE and the like.

They keep telling us lockdown and greater restrictions are to help the NHS, but they never ask us what we need. We don't have the resources to make even a tiny dent in waiting lists.

Unlike Tory nominees who clearly have no expertise to run track-and-trace, or organise distribution of the vaccine, it takes at least three years to train nurses and other health professionals. And it is staff that we are desperately short of. Many of us fear seeing our families at Christmas - we know what Covid looks like and, even if we don't get it badly, we just can't cope with large-scale sickness come January.

It's pretty obvious that the Tories hope we'll accept a tiny pay rise, because no one else is getting one. And it doesn't help that the chair of the NHS unions, Sara Gorton, begs Boris Johnson to "show he has a heart with a pay rise before Christmas". We stand together with all key workers, not to beg but to demand action to secure the pay rise we all deserve.

The Socialist Party demands:

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Finance appeal

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.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
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In The Socialist 2 December 2020:


What we think

Spending Review. Unions must resist return to austerity


Spending Review

What will the spending review mean for me?

Napo kickstarts fight against pay freeze


News

Better for billionaires. Worse for workers

Arcadia and Debenhams closures: Nationalise to save jobs and pensions

Scotland: Campaign wins end to period poverty

NHS: Underfunded, understaffed, underpaid

News in brief


Devolution

Where is devolution heading?


Workplace News

Don't let the festive season be one of misery for retail workers

Equity union conference calls for radical change - now lead a fight!

Solidarity with Brighton UCU strike - we won't pay for Covid crisis

East London teachers strike in support of victimised union rep

Heathrow workers strike against 'fire and rehire' plans

Hackney: Stop plan to halve school support staff!

Pay freeze protest Homerton Hospital

Unison general secretary ballot closes


Environment

'Building back greener' - yet more Tory greenwash


International News

Conflict in Ethiopia: ethnic-linguistic divisions are the historical product of capitalist inequality


Marxism

Review: Friedrich Engels - Condition of the working class in England


Campaigns

Socialism 2020 feedback

Wales TUSC plans to mount an electoral challenge

Rent strikers' victory in Manchester student halls

Labour meeting lets MP get away with 'Spycops' abstention

Selling the Socialist

Fighting fund target smashed!


Reader's opinion

TV: The Social Dilemma

Fast fashion, big profits, low pay

Diego Maradona - Working-class rebel, football genius

Socialist Inbox


 

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Related links:

NHS:

triangleVaccine confidence - a worker's response

triangleOn the NHS front line

triangleNHS Emergency - Fight for a fully funded, publicly owned, socialist NHS

triangleFully resource the vaccination programme now

triangleNHS pandemic warnings ignored - renationalise our NHS

Pay:

triangleMorrisons - 10/hr headline hides divisive pay offer

triangleBritish Gas strike continues

trianglePCS Broad Left Network conference

triangleScrap fees, refund rents and pay a living grant

US:

triangleNews in Brief

triangleTrump Twitter ban: only independent workers' voice can defeat right

triangleUSA in crisis - the need for a socialist alternative

Health:

triangleDispatches from the front - health workers speak out

triangleOur health and livelihoods before their profits

PFI:

triangleCapitalism fails NHS services in Liverpool: scrap PFI!

Covid:

trianglePolice use Covid laws to intimidate BLM protesters

Nurses:

triangleSuper-rich tax evasion costs 34 million nurses worldwide

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