Greens urge Labour Council to ‘end their hypocrisy’ on NHS cuts ahead of march to defend the NHS on Sunday

22 September 2017

 

The Greens have called on local Labour Councillors to do more to protect the city from devastating NHS cuts ahead of a march on NHS privatisation that will coincide with the Labour party conference this weekend.

Green Councillors and Green MP Caroline Lucas will join doctors, health professionals and campaigners this Sunday, 24th September in Brighton to protest against cuts to the NHS largely known as ‘Sustainable Transformation Plans’  or STP– sweeping plans that Greens fear will pave the way for the outsourcing of the NHS. Drafts of the ‘STP’ affecting Sussex have caused alarm by suggesting local health services will be expected to make close to £864m in savings, leading to concern over the future of NHS service and jobs, with 55% of doctors in the city also fearing plans will affect patient safety. [1]

Recent interventions from the Labour Group of Councillors have raised alarm amongst Green Councillors who are keen to see proposals to make huge cuts to the NHS be the subject of full and open public consultation. 

Councillor Dick Page, Green spokesperson for Health and Wellbeing commented:

 

“With fears of the worst winter on record ahead for our hospital, and GP numbers in the city dangerously low, all our Labour Council can do is look the other way and dream that “integration/ efficiencies” will be a magic wand. Meanwhile the government’s secret STP cuts move ahead, putting patients at risk and threatening key services such as A&E. 

“Greens are fully committed to a public NHS and continue to oppose cuts and privatisation. If the Labour Party in Parliament are serious about ending NHS cuts this message certainly hasn’t got through to our local Labour Councillors, who voted to reject Green proposals calling for a full public consultation on cuts plans, with Chair of Health and Wellbeing Daniel Yates even making a case for us to ‘opt in’ to the STP process. [2] They have cancelled key meetings of an STP scrutiny committee with little notice, and most recently, even refused to do something as mild as ‘express concern’ about the huge funding gaps made by these proposals.[3] 

“National Labour say one thing, local councillors do another and our local Councillors must end this hypocrisy if they want to protect our NHS.”






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