ourNHS

Hospital closure clause - the campaign continues!

The campaign to stop the 'hospital closure clause' reaches its critical stages over the next month or so - here's how to help.

Louise Irvine
20 December 2013

Opposition is mounting to the “draconian” nature of clause 118 of the Care Bill - "the hospital closure clause".

Campaigners against the clause handed in a petition – over 140,000 signatures – to the Department of Health on Monday 16th, the day of the second reading of the Care Bill in the House of Commons.

An early opposition motion was defeated. But this is just the start of the campaign which will gather momentum in the New Year. The Care Bill now goes to committee stage where it could be amended and then goes back to the Commons where further amendments can be voted on, before the final vote in February.

Speaking in the Commons debate this week, shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham said the hospital closure clause was an “affront to democracy” which “paves the way for a new round of financially driven hospital closures” which “should send a shiver through every community”.

Campaigners plan to step up the campaign in January with intensive lobbying of MPs, letter writing and public events to highlight the dangers of this clause. Look out for further updates after the New Year about what you can do locally to help defeat this dangerous legislation.

Anyone can submit evidence to the committee examining the bill - see details here.

And check out the letter which the OurNHS editor has sent already to her local newspapers in Gloucestershire. Could you send a similar letter to your own local paper?

Campaigners also continue to collect signatures for the petition and are aiming for quarter of a million signatures – so please forward it to friends and colleagues.

In the meantime, on a festive note, the Lewisham NHS choir single “Bridge Over You” has been doing well having reached number 15 in the independent single charts and no 4 on Amazon download charts but we are still hoping it will get into the Xmas top 10 – it needs lots of downloads this week to do so. With its accompanying video celebrating the caring ethos of the NHS, it would be a tremendous boost for NHS staff morale if this single got into the top 10. All proceeds go to charity including 50% to the MacMillan cancer charity.

Here’s to an enjoyable festive season and continued working together to save our NHS in 2014.

 

Like this piece? Please donate to OurNHS here to support our campaigning journalism to protect the NHS. Thank you. 

 

Can there be a green populist project on the Left?

Many on the Left want to return to a politics based on class, not populism. They point to Left populist parties not reaching their goals. But Chantal Mouffe argues that as the COVID-19 pandemic has put the need for protection from harm at the top of the agenda, a Left populist strategy is now more relevant than ever.

Is this an opportunity for a realignment around a green democratic transformation?

Join us for a free live discussion on Thursday 22 October, 5pm UK time/12pm EDT.

Hear from:

Paolo Gerbaudo Sociologist and political theorist, director of the Centre for Digital Culture at King’s College London and author of ‘The Mask and the Flag: Populism and Global Protest’ and ‘The Digital Party: Political Organisation and Online Democracy’, and of the forthcoming ‘The Great Recoil: Politics After Populism and Pandemic’.

Chantal Mouffe Emeritus Professor of Political Theory at the University of Westminster in London. Her most recent books are ‘Agonistics. Thinking the World Politically’, ‘Podemos. In the Name of the People’ and ‘For a Left Populism’.

Spyros A. Sofos Researcher and research coordinator at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, Lund University and author of ‘Nation and Identity in Contemporary Europe’, ‘Tormented by History’ and ‘Islam in Europe: Public Spaces and Civic Networks'.

Chair: Walid el Houri Researcher, journalist and filmmaker based between Berlin and Beirut. He is partnerships editor at openDemocracy and lead editor of its North Africa, West Asia project.

Had enough of ‘alternative facts’? openDemocracy is different Join the conversation: get our weekly email

Comments

We encourage anyone to comment, please consult the oD commenting guidelines if you have any questions.
Audio available Bookmark Check Language Close Comments Download Facebook Link Email Newsletter Newsletter Play Print Share Twitter Youtube Search Instagram WhatsApp yourData