Posts under ‘Public services’

NHS: He who pays the Privateer’s Peer

by Solomon Hughes.

Former Labour Health Minister Lord Warner’s call for everyone to pay £10 a month fees to use the NHS got very wide press coverage. The Mail, Telegraph, Times, Guardian and Independent wrote 500-odd-word stories on Warner’s charge-for-the-NHS call. The Mirror, Sun and other tabloids chipped in with 200-word pieces on Warner’s fees, including his extra demand that […]

Wolverhampton Council cuts: What are the alternatives?

by John Millington.

Wolverhampton – the home of the once mighty Wolves football team and the former workshop of the world in manufacturing, has been dealt a crushing 21st century economic body blow. Council bosses revealed to their stunned workforce this month that 2000 of them will almost certainly be made redundant following the latest round of cuts to […]

Fast Facts: Gender social inequality and austerity in Europe

by Tom Gill.

Europe’s austerity fetish and longer term neo-liberal reforms promoted by Big Business, Governments and the EU Commission hurt women disproportionately. Here’s a few facts to illustrate the point. Europe wide  The gender pay gap is around 16% It ranges from more than a quarter (27%) in Estonia to around a fiftieth (2%) in Slovenia. The latest figures […]

The private sector isn’t just providing NHS services, but now commissioning them too

by Michael Meacher.

It had always been the Thatcherite/Blairite dogma of service provision that the big private companies – whether the likes of Capita, G4S, Serco, A 4E, Atos or the huge US healthcare multinationals – wouold provide all the health services, but the commissioning would be done by the independent public sector. Now even that split, with […]

Private oligarchs have it all stitched up in Whitehall outsourcing

by Michael Meacher.

Once upon a time we had nationalised industries; now we have Capita, G4S, Serco, A4E, and the rest of a small coterie of private conglomerates who dominate the service world. Unlike the nationalised industries they have no specialist focus, but merely bid for anything going, much of which they handle poorly or badly as we […]

Living where privatised railways mean subsidising foreign state-run services

by Dan McCurry.

The railway that passes our constituency Labour party office in Bethnal Green and Bow is owned by Abellio, the Dutch state railway company. Am I alone in thinking this is somewhat surreal? We supposedly put these franchises out to tender because we wanted the private sector to provide their management know-how. It turns out that […]

Putting public interest first means rejecting Tory dogma that private is best

by Jon Trickett.

Recently, Ed Miliband said that the times we live in demand “a new culture in our public services. Not old-style, top-down central control, with users as passive recipients of services. Nor a market-based individualism which says we can simply transplant the principles of the private sector lock, stock and barrel into the public sector.” In […]

Water is a public service – not a commodity

by Dave Watson.

Water is a public good, not a commodity. Today there will be a hearing in the European Parliament on the European Citizens Initiative – Right to Water (watch it live online). Nearly two million people signed this initiative across Europe, asking the European Commission to propose legislation implementing the human right to water and sanitation as recognised by […]

Ed Miliband, the NHS and the lurch back towards Blairism

by John Lister.

Ed Miliband’s Hugo Young lecture this week represents a giant step back to Blairism, and an extended statement of Labour’s failure to get the message. Who is Ed Miliband talking to? Who does he want to impress? Delivering a 6,000 word Hugo Young lecture this week, Miliband calls for “a new culture in our public services”. But in […]

Welfare for Gideon’s corporate chums, but forget about it if you’re poor

by Michael Meacher.

Last year, the “big four” banks – HSBC, Barclays, RBS and Lloyds – enjoyed a ‘too big to fail’ taxpayer subsidy of no less than £38bn, the New Economics Foundation thinktank (NEF) have revealed. This is in an economy where the budget deficit is still £111bn, and where money is so tight that Osborne has […]

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