UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

UNISON rallies for the NHS

Yesterday hundreds of UNISON members attended a rally for the NHS at Liverpool’s Kings Dock. Health conference delegates and members of local branches assembled to hear speeches from UNISON and international public service union leaders:  http://www.unison.org.uk/news/news_view.asp?did=6738
The lively and noisy lunchtime rally was hosted by North West regional secretary Frank Hont and heard a rousing speech from UNISON health chair Lilian Macer. Tory attempts to smash the NHS and the welfare state will be resisted. Our people did not create the economic mess and they will not clear it up. Go back to your workplaces and tell your members that the class war is on, said Lilian.

General Secretary Dave Prentis followed up his earlier conference speech by reiterating his demand that the Government ‘pull rather than pause’ the Health and Social Care Bill. If industrial action is necessary to defend the NHS then so be it we will take industrial action. We demand fair pensions and fair pay for all NHS workers, said Dave.

International speakers from Ireland and the Federation of European Public Services Unions (EPSU) gave detailed accounts of austerity measures being implemented in Ireland and elsewhere in Europe.

The final speaker was Eleanor Smith, UNISON Vice President and theatre nurse, who called on all present to work ‘night and day to defend the NHS for the sake of our children and grandchildren.’