“The blood is on the hands of Conservative party ministers not the hardworking nurses and doctors that risked their lives to keep us safe in the darkest hours of a global pandemic.”
By Keep Our NHS Public
Keep Our NHS Public stands with all those who work in the NHS, whether they are directly employed by the NHS or employed by outsourced companies. We stand with NHS staff whether they voted to accept the Government’s recent pay offer or whether they voted to reject it.
With the cost of living crisis caused by this Government spiralling out of control, with latest food inflation at 19%, we understand and respect the decision of all those who felt they needed to take the one-off payment. Times are hard. For some of us, that would have been an incredibly difficult choice to make.
We also stand proudly with those who feel they are able and willing to fight on for better pay, better conditions, respect at work and for increased safety for patients. The Government and their allies in certain sections of the media will look to the strikes and blame them for any safety issues that arise from them. However, Keep Our NHS Public is absolutely clear that the Government caused tens of thousands of needless deaths during the height of Covid, and hundreds of unnecessary and preventable deaths every week this year alone. After 13 years, it has driven the NHS wilfully into the ground. The blood is on the hands of Conservative party ministers not the hardworking nurses and doctors that risked their lives to keep us safe in the darkest hours of a global pandemic.
Outside of the unions themselves, and other staff led groups like NHS Workers Say No, Keep Our NHS Public has been one of the most visible campaigning organisations on the picket lines and we will continue to show our support.
We’ll stand with the Junior Doctors if they’re forced to strike again.
We’ll be with RCN nurses who are striking for 48 hours from 8pm 30 April through to 8pm 2 May.
We’ll be joining the picket at South London’s Maudsley Hospital when GMB cleaning and catering staff employed by ISS strike on 23 and 24 April.
And we’ll be supporting Unite the Union ambulance workers on 2nd May in South Central, South East Coast and West Midlands ambulance trusts, Christies NHS Foundation Trust, Christies Pathology Partnership, East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust and Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust and London’s Guys and St Thomas’ NHS Trust and Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust!
We continue to encourage all of our large, passionate community of supporters, members, activists, and all those who care about saving the NHS, to get out onto their picket line and let the NHS staff know we support them.
And the reason why is very simple:
It is impossible to deliver a first class service with exhausted, burnt-out, and demoralised staff, who are understandably looking to less stressful professions to make more money. When some are choosing heating over food, who can blame them? It’s no wonder that wards are understaffed, and staff over-worked.
To those who say ‘where will the money come from?’, don’t forget the billions wasted during Covid and billions more now being diverted from NHS funding to private sector hospitals instead of building the NHS. While the Government trumpets its spending on the NHS as reaching record highs, the truth is that,
changes in the size of the English population – which has grown by 10.6 million since 1979 – mean that spending per person has not grown as fast as the total spend.
The fact is, in real terms the NHS faces an unsustainable year on year deficit at present rates of investment.
As recently as 2017, the NHS was still considered the best health care service in the world. This isn’t so long ago. However much it tries, the Government simply cannot make a good argument as to why this decline has happened on their watch. It is hard not to think that this undermining and breaking up of the NHS is intentional.
So, we’re clear: stand with all NHS workers, call out the Government for its treatment of our NHS, and join us to help restore a world class health care service once more for future generations.
- This article was originally published by Keep Our NHS Public on April 19th, 2023.
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