Sunday, 14 September 2014

Thousands campaign against NHS 'sell-off' in Trafalgar Square

Save Our Hospital campaigners performed a 'die-in' in Hammersmith's Lyric Square before joining others at a rally in Trafalgar Square, including Billy Bragg and Bill Bailey



15,000 people gathered in Trafalgar Square to campaign against the NHS being 'sold-off'

SUPPORTERS trying to save Charing Cross Hospital joined campaigners and celebrities at a rally in Trafalgar Square.
Shoppers on Saturday would have been surprised to find people dropping to the floor in Hammersmith's Lyric Square as they staged a ‘die-in’ to raise awareness of threatened hospitals. Hammersmith, along with Central Middlesex hospitals’ A&Es will shut tomorrow (Wednesday) as part of the NHS’s Shaping a Healthier Future programme.
The Save Our Hospitals campaigners then joined thousands of people in Trafalgar Square who believe the coalition government is selling-off the NHS.
Hammersmith MP Andy Slaughter spoke to the crowd which police estimated to be between 3,000 and 5,000. It included a group of mothers from County Durham called the Darlo Mums who had completed the last leg of a 300-mile march which began on August 16. It was a re-enactment of the 1936 Jarrow March, a protest against poverty and unemployment during the Great Depression.
Musician Billy Bragg joined the MP to fight for the NHS and played his 2008 song ‘I keep faith’ to the crowds.
Hammersmith comedian and long-time NHS campaigner Bill Bailey was spotted supporting from the midst of the crowd.



MP Andy Slaughter (left) was joined by Billy Bragg and Sadiq Khan MP (right)








Mr Slaughter said: “This weekend we saw Hammersmith and London at its very best. After the ‘die-in’ I was joined by hundreds from west London’s Save our Hospitals campaign to march to Trafalgar Square to stand up for our NHS.
“It was a real privilege to join the Darlo Mums on stage after all they have accomplished and to be joined by so many of my London Labour colleagues. Together, there was a real sense that we can continue the fight against the Tories and those trying to downgrade our local NHS services. Labour created the NHS, we’ve saved it from Tory neglect in the past, and now we will do it again in 2015.”



Save Our Hospital campaigners staged a 'die-in' in Hammersmith's Lyric Square to save the NHS










The rally comes a month after Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust gave the green light to sell 55 per cent of Charing Cross Hospital , move out integral services, sell 45 per cent of St Mary’s Hospital, Paddington and the entire Western Eye Hospital in Marylebone.It is also just over two and a half weeks since getwestlondon revealed the trust needs £400 million more , after the hospital sales, to redevelop.Organisers claimed as many as 15,000 people took part in the event on Saturday.
http://www.getwestlondon.co.uk/news/west-london-news/thousands-campaign-against-nhs-sell-off-7738724

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