Health Campaigns Together and The People’s Assembly have called a Day of Protest on Saturday 3 February in response to the worsening crisis in the National Health Service.
An ‘emergency demonstration’ is planned in London with a rally in Trafalgar Square or Whitehall while local and regional events will be held around the country.
The protests will demand:
- an end to the winter crisis with a cash injection to restore the NHS budget
- a commitment to increased funding each year
- an end to the cap on NHS pay
- no cuts, no closures, no privatisation.
The ‘Keep Our NHS Public’ website explains the need for the demonstration, saying: “Our NHS is in a serious crisis: ambulances queuing for hours to hand over seriously ill patients, patients left in corridors waiting for beds, operations postponed, and mental health patients taken hundreds of miles to find a bed.
“Theresa May and Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt issued a hollow apology and deny any crisis. But the problem comes from deliberate government policy of cuts, bed closures, pay restraint and privatisation. Our NHS has been starved of funding with inadequate investment in staff and resources. Eight thousand front line beds and 20% of mental health beds have closed.
“Eight years of below inflation pay settlements have contributed to 100,000 vacant posts for health professionals – leaving no spare capacity for peaks of demand and increasing the pressure on the dedicated staff who remain.
“We don’t want apologies, we demand change.”
What: NHS in Crisis: Fix it Now! day of protest
Where: London and nationwide
When: Saturday 3 February 2018
London demonstration details:
Assemble: 12noon, Gower Street, London WC1E (near UCL Hospital)
Rally: Trafalgar Sq or Whitehall (to be confirmed).
Transport details from The People’s Assembly website.