Greenman's Occasional Organ

Ecosocialist. Syndicalist. Critical Techno-Progressive.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Protest Against Health Privateers In Nottingham

The following is a press release from Nottinghamshire, Mansfield and Nottingham Trades Council:

PRESS RELEASE

Virgin Healthcare have announced their plans to take advantage of the government's "Public Private Partnership" reforms (aka backdoor privatisation) at a launch event being held at Nottingham Castle on Tuesday 12 February 2008.

Nottinghamshire, Mansfield and Nottingham Trades Council (NMNTC) has called a noisy lobby and protest outside the event, from 6.30pm. There will be people attending from a number of trade unions, including UNISON, UNITE, University and Colleges Union, and many others. The local Keep Our NHS Public campaign will also be attending, as will members of various political organisations. There will be banners, placards, megaphones, and most importantly, ordinary people protecting their NHS.

The reason we are taking this action is that the NHS and public health is too important to leave to the private sector. Ordinary people fought for decades to win and defend our NHS, paid for with our money. Now private companies such as Virgin want to make a profit from our health. Why should our taxpayer's money be syphoned off as profits to private individuals? Why is the government allowing and encouraging the breakup of the NHS?

NMNTC is committed to public services being kept public, and not holding them to to the whims of "the market" or shareholders. In recent weeks we have seen the disastrous effects of privatisation in action, with privatised power companies bringing in massive price rises. Virgin Trains have repeatedly increased prices above inflation. How long will it be before the same thing happens if we let our healthcare be handed over to such companies? Michael Moore's film "Sicko" has just shown us what a private health system looks like, do we want the same thing in the UK?

Join us from 6.30pm on Tuesday 12 February at Nottingham Castle to tell Virgin we don't want their healthcare - we want OUR NHS. Keep our NHS public!

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