Unite pushes for mass protest to save NHS from Tory pr...

Unite pushes for mass protest to save NHS from Tory privatisation monster

07 August 2013

Unite, the country’s biggest union, has today (Wednesday) warned that the government is creating a Frankenstein-like monster out of the NHS as it imposes private providers on to the national service.

In a new short animated film launched today, (Wednesday) the union warns that in the next few years, £20 billion worth of health service contracts will be in private hands, while the NHS struggles under multi-billion pound cuts and mounting staff losses which has seen 7,000 nurses lose their jobs.
Watch the film here: Save our NHS.

Working with a coalition of trade unions, Unite is urging people to come together for a mass protest in Manchester on Sunday 29 September to save our NHS from the government’s ideological assault on one of the most effective health services in the world.

Unite has launched the film in a bid to tell the British public that the government’s NHS privatisation juggernaut is creating a fragmented Frankenstein-like health service with private companies queuing up to cash in on their ill health. Watch it here.

Barrie Brown, Unite national officer for health, said: "The government’s shameful sell off of NHS services, from ambulances and the blood service to pathology and speech therapy, is creating a monster.

"David Cameron pledged to the people of this country that the NHS would be safe in his hands but under the noses of an unsuspecting public our greatest national asset is falling into the hands of big business and US private profiteers.
“Our fear is that the greater the hold of the private sector on our NHS, the greater the motivation to turn a profit from people's ill health.  This will make it more difficult to maintain the NHS as a free at the point of use service, one based on need and not the ability to pay.

“This government has created an NHS emergency.  Unite is calling on the great British public to join us in Manchester at the Conservative party conference to send a clear message that our NHS is not for sale.”

Evidence of the escalating crisis in the service can be seen in Unite’s current fight to protect the ambulance service in Yorkshire and Humberside from a dangerous downgrading of the ambulance crew complement.

Since April 2013, a sample of clinical services contracts taken from official tender websites found that only two had been awarded to the NHS with 17 going to the independent sector.

For further information contact Chantal Chegrinec, Unite communications officer, on 07774 146 777

Notes to editors: