Last week a lively meeting of 40 to 50 people, chaired by Unison’s Mike Parkinson, agreed to set up a Steering Group of about 15 people who volunteered at the meeting.
The meeting agreed:
- The campaign group would be called Band Together for Our NHS.
- Michael Parkinson would set up an email address for the group’s secretariat stuff that’s NOT a Unison email account.
- This is because the meeting agreed on a decentralised approach to the campaign -letting all groups initiate and carry out their own actions, with a single online calendar to coordinate/inform everyone about what’s going on. Unison and Labour will support campaign with money and their own actions but this is defo an all-in campaign run in a no-party political way
- Jenny Shepherd will coordinate fact finding about possible legal breaches by the partners to the Strategic Review/RCRTRP, as basis for legal advice about whether we have case for judicial review – more info available soon, you can contact Jenny with ideas or info here
- Actions will be both large and small and there are three events that are now in the planning stage:
- Lobby of Councillors on 16th April, for a special council meeting and motion calling on Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust, Locala and South West Yorkshire Foundation Partnership Trust to withdraw any proposals to close or downgrade A & E services – find out how you can lobby your Councillors here
- A May Day Procession will be held in Halifax on the 3rd May 2014 as a show of support for Health services.
- Lobby of Lords in May to highlight the final reading of the Care Bill which aims to give the Secretary of State for Health the powers to close Hospitals without any effective public consultation – the petitions used by different campaign groups can be used in this lobby.
- The steering committee will meet next Thursday (17th April) to discuss plans for the May Day Procession and the Lobby of Lords – further details will be published after that meeting.
- Tie in actions to CCG timetable for engagement and consultation
- Support for Calderdale Council motion to tell CHFT et al to withdraw strategic review/SOC & some kind of people’s enquiry/commission to identify what a better way forward for Calderdale & Huddersfield NHS would be, that had proper public support – this could be informed by Save Lewisham Hospital’s People’s Enquiry and Calderdale Council Leader Tim Swift agreed to follow up on finding out more about how the SLH People’s Enquiry worked.
- It is important to define what Band Together for our NHS wants for our NHS and social care, as well as what it doesn’t want – the Options 2-4 in the Strategic Review.