The NHS is probably the most urgent political fight the country is facing at the moment. So I make no apologies for my second guest blog of the month also being about the NHS. The focus in this is on the local party politics, while the previous was more about the wider campaign. Leader of the Council, Jo Lovelock explains that local Conservative and Libdem councillors have shown support for the bill in public. Of course we know what our MP thinks
“We promised at the elections last May that we would stand up for the NHS, and we have taken that
campaign onto the streets and into the Council chamber. The Health& Social Care Bill is intended to break up the NHS, to make services compete rather than co-operate, to open the door to ever-increasing privatisation, and to hide decision-making under a cloak of commercial confidentiality, ending any pretence at transparency.
Every poll shows that the public is overwhelmingly against the Bill, as is virtually every professional body of doctors, nurses, midwives and the rest. It beggars belief that the Government is pushing stubbornly ahead with this legislation, and has the wholehearted support of Reading’s two Tory MPs, and that local Tory and LibDem
Councillors, too, put loyalty to the Coalition before the interests of their constituents and voted to support the Bill in the debate Labour forced on Reading Council.
Those Councillors need to be sent a strong message on 3 May that the people of Reading value their National Health Service and value the huge investment in our hospitals from the last Labour Government, and know that the Tories just cannot be trusted with our NHS. Nor can the Liberal Democrats– even though they could support Labour MP’s and kill this Bill tomorrow, they seem determined, as ever, to put their alliance with the Tories first. We don’t need political meddling with the NHS and we especially don’t need it now!”