Latest from Notts SOS: Pensions, Save the NHS, ATOS Two case dropped, DLA report


This is the latest update from Notts SOS about anti-cuts activity in
and around Notttingham.

This week updates on the campaign for public sector pensions, the
ongoing struggle to save the NHS, Nottingham’s “Atos Two” who have now
had the charges against them dropped and reforms to disability
benefits.

Thanks for your interest and support.

1) NOTTS SOS MEETING

We meet every two weeks which means that the next meetings is on
Monday 23rd January.

As ever, we meet at 7.30pm at the International Community Centre,
Mansfield Road. Meetings are usually finished before 9pm and there’s
often an opportunity to carry on any discussion informally in the pub
afterwards. Please do come along and get involved.

2) PROTECT PUBLIC SECTOR PENSIONS

Notts Trades Council are calling for the fight to protect public
sector pensions to be stepped-up. The “Heads of Agreement” agreed by
some unions, but rejected by others, do not change the fundamental
issues for public sector workers – working longer and paying more to
get less in retirement.

The trades council have convened a special public meeting on Tuesday
17th January from 7.30 pm at the Nottingham Mechanics Institute 3
North Sherwood Street, Nottingham, NG1 4EZ. All are invited to come
along and share your views and ideas on how this dispute can be won.

Details: http://www.nottstuc.org/2012/01/public-sector-pensions-we-must-fight-on.html

3) SAVE THE NHS

The more pressure that is put on personnel involved in changes in the
National Health Service the more likely it is that we can obstruct the
Government’s privatization plan.

Please find below a model letter for patients who are concerned about
the Government’s proposed changes to the NHS.

Nottingham and Notts Branch of Keep Our NHS Public (KONP) urge you
to post or email this letter to the doctors at the general practice at
which you are registered.  You may wish to alter the text to express
your particular concerns.

Also please forward this letter on to other people who may wish to use
it.  It would be useful if you would inform KONP of any responses you
receive.

Contact: info@Notts-KONP.org.uk

*  *  *

Dear Dr./Drs. … .

I am very concerned about the changes to Primary Health Care that the
Government is trying to bring about by means of its Health and Social
Care Bill.

The Government intends that the provision of much health care will be
brought about by means of Clinical Commissioning Groups purchasing
appropriate services.  We have been led to believe that it will be
general practitioners in CCG’s who will actively choose the suppliers
of services.  However, close scrutiny of the proposed legislation
reveals that most GP’s will not be deemed to be suitably qualified and
experienced to make such decisions.  In practice it will be
representatives of private health care companies who will effectively
decide how the money will be spent.  As you are probably aware, the
British Medical Association has expressed serious concerns about this
and other aspects of the proposed changes to the NHS.

In general it seems to me that the Government’s proposed changes to
the NHS do not have the aim of creating a more effective health care
service.  Rather the real aim is to provide opportunities for private
companies to make profits.  Such a change could well result in a
decline in standards of health care. There is some very useful
briefing information on the website of Allyson Pollock –
http://allysonpollock.co.uk and more campaign information on
http://www.keepournhspublic.com

As one of your patients I would like to know what are your views on
the Government’s plans for change in the NHS.  I suggest a discussion
of these matters at the next meeting of your patient participations
group.

Yours sincerely,

(Signature)

4) ATOS TWO

We are delighted to be able to report that the two Nottingham
residents arrested during a protest at Atos ‘Healthcare’ in September
last year have had their charges dropped.

You can find more details on Nottingham Indymedia:
http://nottingham.indymedia.org/articles/2340

Despite the case being dropped a demonstration against Atos Healthcare
and police repression is still going ahead on Friday 3rd February.
People will be meeting at 12.30pm at the junction Carlton Street and
Heathcote Street, Hockley (outside Ice Nine).

For event details, leaflets, posters etc.:
http://nottingham.indymedia.org/articles/2335

5) SPARTACUS REPORT

A new report has been released exposing the government’s spin over
it’s attempts to ‘reform’ (i.e. cut) Disability Living Allowance.

This report is a comprehensive presentation of the most relevant
evidence available on Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and the
proposals to replace it with a new benefit, Personal Independence
Payments (PIP). It gathers together existing information and analyses
over 500 group responses to the Government’s Response to Disability
Living Allowance reform.

Unsurprisingly, the report finds that the government’s consultation on
the issue was flawed and failed to meet the Government’s code of
practice for consultations. Also, the fact that 74% of respondents
were opposed to the plans (including Boris Johnson for pity’s sake)
seems to have been brushed aside.

Read the report online (opens in Google Docs): http://bit.ly/x7KaeW

If you are on Twitter, search #spartacusreport for more info and comment.


Notts Save Our Services
Twitter: @nottssos

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