Sun May 12, 2013 10:22AM
An unprecedented coalition of British trade unions, Labour MPs, medical staff, anti-privatization campaign groups and London residents will descend on the streets of London on May 18 to protest government’s closure and privatization of hospitals. The planned closures across London include nine accident and emergency departments, several maternity units and thousands of hospital bed. Campaigners are now warning that the plans could put lives at risk. This comes as the situation is worsened by ministers considering hospital sell-offs to multi-national private companies. Organizers of the demonstration claim hundreds of thousands of London residents are opposed to the plans. “The local campaigns have joined up to call on the government to stop these closures. We are working together to undermine the government’s divisive tactics of playing one hospital off against another. Instead we are demanding that the government provide the funding needed for safe levels of care across the capital,” campaigners said. The demonstration has been called by Save our Hospital campaigns across London and London Keep Our NHS Public. It follows other recent protest actions against NHS changes including the massive 25,000-strong march to defend Lewisham hospital as well as a petition against the closures in North West London that has so far gathered 80,000 signatures. AMR/HE