‘Save our NHS’: Protest rally set for Lincoln High Street this weekend

Campaigners have called for a protest on Lincoln High Street this weekend in opposition to cuts, closures and privatisation within the county’s NHS.

Lincoln and District TUC has called the rally on Saturday, May 6 at 12 noon from the city War Memorial.

A number of speakers are lined up for the event including Gary Freeman from Unison, Grantham Hospital campaigner Melissa Darcey, Dr Jon Dale from Unite Notts NHS, Elaine Smith representing the National Pensioners Union and Nick Parker from the Lincoln and District TUC.

Elaine Smith, Lincoln & District TUC president, said: “Hospitals, GPs, mental health, ambulance and community services are on their knees through underfunding.

“Meanwhile NHS spending on private sector providers has increased by 33% since 2013.

“Our rally has been called to demonstrate that we will fight to save our NHS from destruction.”

Melissa Darcey, a Grantham hospital campaigner from the Fighting 4 Life Lincolnshire group, added: “I look forward to joining with Lincoln TUC to rally in support of our NHS.

“It is important to Fighting 4 Life Lincolnshire as we are the regional campaign fighting against the Sustainability and Transformation Plans and it will give us a great opportunity to raise awareness in Lincoln.”

Lincolnshire’s Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP) is part of a national reshuffle of NHS services and sets out the vision for the county’s health and care. Health bosses say the plan has been drawn up to improve the quality of care in the county and meet constitutional standards.

The STP, which is still subject to public consultation, has been hit with criticism from, residents, councillors and campaign groups, particularly surrounding plans to downgrade Grantham hospital.

ULHT CEO Jan Sobeiraj addressed this and more in his most recent live chat with Lincolnshire Reporter: