Your Letters – Friday November 24, 2017

Let Hunt see life at the hospital coalface

Letter of the Week: L Thompson, Dewsbury

Fair play to Paula Sherriff for sticking to her guns and finally getting Jeremy Hunt to come and see the havoc his government have wrought on our local health services.

Mr Hunt will be hard pressed to find a ward or department in any English hospital where he’ll be given a warm welcome and shown round by a happy team who are all on board with the state of the NHS.

I bet his team of minders and advisors have to plan ahead to avoid him being accosted by over-worked doctors, nurses and admin staff who want to have a word in his shell-like about what’s going on.

Mr Hunt needs to get out of his Westminster bubble, where political people just show him manipulated facts and figures, and see what’s happening on the ground.

His visit to Dewsbury Hospital shouldn’t be stage-managed by the Trust, he needs to see a standard ward on a standard day and spend a good few hours there to get a feel for what’s really going wrong with healthcare nationwide.

Sugar-coating facts for him is no good for anyone. So Paula Sherrif and co need to show him warts and all what life’s like at the coalface. 

Don’t let the higher-ups from the Mid Yorkshire Trust spirit him away for secret talks where they’ll tell him it’s all fine and manageable, get him speaking to nurses who’ve just finished a 12-hour shift so they can tell him what his policies are doing to staff morale and patient safety.

The end is nigh for NHS

From: Christine Hyde, Dewsbury

The local NHS Sustainability and Transformation Partnership says that West Yorkshire will be well on its way to being an ‘Accountable Care System’ by April 2018! 

Did you know that? This is a stepping stone to the Americanised Accountable Care Organisation (ACO). The clue is in the name, Transformation.

The new contract involved will open the way to putting commercial bodies, ie private companies and other non-NHS organisations, in place  to devise, organise and run NHS services and social care.

NHS England says it will give those chosen a free reign. The downside is that when there is no profit, companies up sticks and leave, like the Southern Cross care home scandal and the disastrous Care UK contract to run Hinchingbrook which they gave back after only three years. 

To make a profit companies cut what is offered or hold the country to ransom, like the banks. 

So it is essentially a reduction of services to match inadequate funding at the moment. 

The end of a comprehensive National Health Service is nigh. 

Join us in calling for a comprehensive health service at

Divorce bill needs a look

From: Betty Goodwin, Earlsheaton

Our politicians’ attempts to negotiate Brexit make me despair. 

Britain paying into EU funds more than we receive back, Europe faces a serious cash shortfall when we leave, so is making negotiations difficult. 

Their demands are ludicrous, completely uncosted. Successful business people should lead our negotiations. They would not allow the EU to ride roughshod over Britain.

Tim Martin, who founded Wetherspoons, could be one candidate, alongside other strong business leaders. 

His view is that EU demands are vastly inflated and Britain could succeed as an independent nation.

The ‘divorce’ bill should be only the genuine cost of obligations to which Britain is already committed, with every Euro independently audited.

They’re living in Paradise...

From: R Spreadbury, Liversedge 

I was watching Children In Need on Friday night.

This ‘show’ was hosted by a plethora of media luvvies, and showcased an endless procession of families who have to cope with the stuff life throws at them.

In the main, all they were all asking for was a few quid and some support to help them cope with their situation.

Then, I am reading about the Paradise Papers, where the super rich are employing well-paid accountants to avoid paying their fair share of tax. 

In the meantime, the Government dogmatically pursues their austerity plan, which disproportionately affect the lives of the ignored North,  the vulnerable and the dispossessed.

Our society truly is broken!

Balfour played a vital role

From: Alan Burton, via email

In the last few weeks across the country celebrations have taken place to mark the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration. 

The declaration was a public statement issued by the British Government during World War One announcing support for the establishment of a national home for the Jewish people in Palestine. 

The letter sent by Arthur James Balfour was important as it recognised the right of the Jewish people to self-determination. 

The modern state of Israel was established on May 14, 1948. 

We should mark with pride the role that Britain played in helping the establishment of the only true democracy in the Middle East. 

Sadly, those who claim to represent the interests of the Palestinian people blame Israel, Britain and others for not having a state, while ignoring their own culpability. 

Had the Arab nations accepted the 1947 United Nations partition agreement there would be a Palestinian state now. 

There would have been no wars in 1948, 1967 and 1973 and there would have been no loss of life in the countless terror attacks that have taken place since. 

If the President of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, would correctly recognise Balfour today as a positive step towards Jewish statehood, and not be so embittered by the failure of his own leadership to achieve sovereignty for his people, it would be a step towards peace in this troubled region.

Enough is enough

From: Colin Walshaw, Scholes

So the EU has given us two weeks to come up with better terms and more money or they will stop negotiating.

This is obviously brutal bullying and one of the reasons why we are better off distancing ourselves from this unelected autocratic forum. 

All they want is more money to prop up their failing budget proposals. 

It’s time we started playing our own game. Our answer should be ‘Okay you have seen our offer, that is the deal, if you do not accept it, all bets are off, including the £20 billion top-up of our budget contributions after 2019. Instead of sending the money to you, this will now be spent exclusively on our NHS over the same two years’. 

We will go onto WTO rules in March 2019, any excess import duties from the EU into this country will be used in part to compensate businesses which may be temporarily disadvantaged by export tariffs. 

We will allow tariffs to be reduced or eradicated on selected foodstuffs from non-EU countries to reduce our cost of living and avoiding CAP tariffs.

All legal EU citizens in employment and their dependents, already here by December 31 this year, will be given full UK citizen’s rights and privileges as of March 2019. 

Persons arriving after December 31 2017 will be subject in 2019, to retrospective review for visa-related work permits, based upon a USA H1b work visa system.

All visitors to the UK will then require a USA-style ESTA, Electronic System for Travel Authorisation, costing £10 allowing multiple up to three months’ holiday stay, and valid for two years, this will also apply to UK citizens travelling to Europe.

We have subsidized the EU for over 40 years and have a significant share in all EU-owned properties worth billions of pounds, not to mention the £9billion still in the European Central Bank, which they want to return to us over the next 50 years. 

We do not owe them one penny, we may possibly allow them to keep all our EU-based assets as some measure of compensation, and a measure of our generosity.

The EU has much more to fear from these terms than we have, due to the balance of trade, which is massively in our favour, and the black hole which will immediately appear in their budget in 2019. 

The Labour Party wants your votes and therefore dare not openly declare their Europhile tendencies.

I would prefer to listen to successful business leaders such as Sir James Dyson, Tim Martin of JD Wetherspoon and Jacob Rees-Mogg, rather than the failed remoaners such as Tony Blair, George Osbourne, Nick Clegg and Ken Clarke.

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