Wide screen devices may view this page better by clicking here

Privatisation

spotCampaigns

spotOrganisations

spotArguments for socialism

spotPeople

spotInternational

spotEvents

spotAround the UK


All keywords


All Campaigns subcategories:

Anti-capitalism

Anti-fascist

Anti-racism

Anti-war

Asylum

Black and Asian

Children

CNWP

Corporate crime

Disability

Education

Election campaigns

Environment

EU

Finance

Food

Gender Recognition Act

Health and safety

Health and welfare

Housing

Human Rights

LGBT Pride

Local government

Local services

Low pay

Migration

Nationalisation

New workers party

NHS

Pensions

Post Office

Poverty

* Privatisation

Public Services

Socialism

Socialist

Sport

Stop the slaughter of Tamils

Students

The state

Transport

TUSC

Welfare rights

Women

Workplace and TU campaigns

Youth


Privatisation


Highlight keywords  |Print this articlePrint this article
From: The Socialist issue 1078, 18 March 2020: Coronavirus: workers must not pay the price!

Search site for keywords: Coronavirus - NHS - Amazon - Privatisation - Health - Virgin

Under the microscope: socialist coronavirus news in brief

Personal protective equipment is vital

Personal protective equipment is vital   (Click to enlarge)

Protective equipment shortages and privatisation preparation must end

Most patients contact their local health centre where GPs, nurses and receptionists are striving to give good care and advice. The government must immediately provide the protective equipment they need. What has been sent out so far is completely inadequate. If health centre staff get infected there will be even more strain in the system.

The huge amount of work imposed by governments as part of their drive towards privatisation - Care Quality Commission reporting, key performance indicators, and so on - must be immediately suspended.

Increased phone and online consultation during the crisis must not be used as justification to give further contracts to private companies like Babylon's 'GP at Hand', that take on NHS patients and undermine the publicly owned primary care system that gives equal access to everyone.

Pandemic response shows plan to break up NHS must be scrapped

The NHS has responded to Covid-19 at a national level - unlike the chaotic response in the United States (see p4-5). This is because NHS England has not yet completed Chief Executive Simon Stevens' 'NHS Long Term Plan' to break up England's single, national health service into 44 US-style health corporations (so-called 'integrated care providers').

Each of these would have its own contract to provide all health services within its area - and could be run by different private companies. There would be no coordination between them. These were to be in place by 2021. Any further moves towards them must now be scrapped immediately.

Covid-19 shows the vital need for a National Health Service that can be planned, and with no room for profiteers. It needs proper funding and democratic control by health workers, trade unions, patients' representatives - and a workers' government - if it is to respond adequately to future crises.

Branson demands bail-out - but asks staff to give up pay

Billionaire Richard Branson is demanding the government stump up £7.5 billion to stop his airline Virgin from crashing. At the same time, he has proposed to his 8,500 staff that they take eight weeks' unpaid leave, with deductions spread over six months.

Paying workers for those eight weeks would cost £34 million. Branson has a personal net worth of almost 100 times that, around £3.2 billion. As of last year, Virgin Trains had sucked over £300 million dividends from privatised rail franchises. As of the year before, Virgin Care had siphoned off NHS contracts worth about £2 billion.

He's had enough! Forget £7.5 billion to return him to profit. Nationalise those planes, trains and clinics with zero compensation to Branson. Full pay, no lay-offs, and emergency mobilisation of resources to counter the corona!

Amazon bosses impose overtime

Amazon warehouse workers are being told to work overtime to tackle the huge demand the coronavirus crisis has created. The GMB union says that workers at least four different sites were informed that they had to work "compulsory overtime" from 16 March. The union accused Amazon of putting "profit before safety".

One worker at Amazon's Dunfermline warehouse in Scotland says: "Staff in the 'inbound goods' department are having additional hours imposed. I think we have a compulsory overtime clause in our contract."

Amazon is forcing workers to work more at a time when the government is telling people to work from home. The GMB's national officer Mick Rix called the overtime reports "extremely concerning", and accused Amazon of "imposing its demands on workers without any regard for their safety".

It's one pandemic for them...

Private jet firms have reported a spike in enquiries from the super-rich seeking to escape the crisis. Chartering a car-sized plane from PrivateFly will set you back around £1,850 an hour. A minibus equivalent is £5,000 an hour.

And where are they going? Some to their private islands and country piles. But others to "disaster bunkers" in remote locations. The 55 "survival condo" units in one former US military compound sold for between $1.5 million and $4.5 million a pop.

Nationalise to save jobs

As we go to press, fashion and homewares chain Laura Ashley is going under with 2,700 jobs, citing the coronavirus. All 531 Carphone Warehouse outlets are to go under, with 2,900 jobs. Nationalise, nationalise, nationalise - to save the jobs, and our high streets!

Compiled by Jon Dale, James Ivens and Scott Jones

Donate to the Socialist Party

Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.

We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to click here to donate to our Fighting Fund.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation £

 

Your message: 

 






Privatisation keywords:

PFI (189)

PPP (20)

Privatisation (935)

Privatised (77)

Public-Private Partnership (4)

Trusts (56)

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Article dated 18 March 2020

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

MEMBER RESOURCES

Pay in Fighting Fund

Pay in paper and book sales

Leaflets

Bulk book orders

New member submission

WHAT'S ON

triangle7 Mar Socialist Party & CWI broadcast: Fighting to end women’s oppression - a socialist and internationalist approach

triangle9 Mar Bristol North Socialist Party: Socialist feminism

triangle9 Mar Caerphilly & RCT Socialist Party: A socialist charter for women in the pandemic

More...


The Socialist, weekly newspaper of the Socialist Party

Subscribespacer|spacerebook / Kindlespacer|spacerPDF versionspacer|spacerText / Printspacer|spacer1123 onlinespacer|spacerBack issuesspacer|spacer Audio files


International Women

International Women's Day rally, Sunday 7th March, 3pm. Click here for Facebook and Zoom links.

What We Stand For
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Platform setting: =

Desktop version