Saturday, 7 May 2011

The Fight Against Cuts Comes to Penzance

Cornwall Anti-Cuts Alliance is spreading to more and more parts of Cornwall. Initially primarily based in Truro and the west of Cornwall, a new group has started operating in Liskeard in the South-East of the county that wants to make links with the group. Similarly in North Cornwall a new group has made links with the county-wide organisation. Now there is a move for Cornwall Anti-Cuts Alliance to set-up branches in local areas in its traditional heartlands. First up is Penzance. Activists were out in the town today (Saturday) campaigning against the cuts in the National Health Service and the plans in the coaltion government's Health and Social Care Bill to effectively privatise the NHS. Shoppers were invited to vote in the 'People's Referendum' on the question 'Should we let private companies make a profit out of our NHS?' and to sign the petition initiated by the group 'Save Our NHS (Cornwall)'.
There was a very good response and many people were interested in getting involved with the group. The next action is a lobby of local LibDem MP Andrew George. on Friday 20 May from 9:45am. There will be a march from West Cornwall Hospital to Andrew George's surgery to hand in the national petition collected by the website 38 Degrees with 700,000 signatures and the local petition initiated by Save Our NHS (Cornwall) with 5000 signatures. Although Andrew George says he is opposed to the bill, there is a need to put pressure on him to make sure he sticks to his word and votes against it when it comes back to the House of Commons. The launch meeting of Penzance Anti-Cuts Alliance is at the Crown pub at the bottom of Bread Street in Penzance at 7pm on Wednesday 25 May.

Meanwhile Cornwall Anti-Cuts Alliance activists were also out in force in Truro today campaining on the NHS. There will be a demonstration at Treliske Hospital next Saturday 14 May at 1pm to demonstrate support for the hospital workers and to oppose the cuts which will cost jobs and endanger lives. There will then be a march to Lemon Quay where Save Our NHS (Cornwall) will be staging a rally. They will be collecting signatures and rising awareness of the implications of the Health and Social Care Bill.

1 comment:

  1. Its worth remembering that its not only service users and campigners that are against the government's plans but health workers too. Dr Mark Porter, chairman of the doctors’ BMA union, spoke out in March. He said that privatisation plans could “turn the clock back to the 1930s” when the poor could rarely afford healthcare and were forced to rely on charity. He lambasted Lansley’s bill, which will force NHS hospitals to compete with private firms. The plans could result in the closure of hospitals and see some patients denied care by private providers because they are too expensive to treat, he said.

    There was a very good response in Penzance on Saturday and many people were angry about the cuts and were interested in leaving contact details. People were queuing up to sign the petition including workers from Treliske Hospital, a Penzance town councillor and a DJ from Penwith Radio.

    The result of the referendum was Yes: 2, No: 78. This is a resounding vote of no confidence in health secretary Andrew Lansley’s plans for the NHS.

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