Your Say - Tuesday 08 January

Law: Anti-hunt protestors at the Holcombe Hunt Boxing Day meeting at Rivington, near Chorley
Law: Anti-hunt protestors at the Holcombe Hunt Boxing Day meeting at Rivington, near Chorley
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Act now to curb NHS privatisation

We at Preston and South Ribble Trades Union Council are conducting a campaign to safeguard our world beating National Health Service.

On April 1, Clinical Commissioning Groups will commence to function in Preston, South Ribble and Chorley. Some major factors have to be answered arising from this reorganisation, which in no way criticises the skill and expertise of the doctors involved.

The CCG will require an administrative team. Will the staff thus employed be transferred from within NHS Direct or will they be agency or one man band consultants? We as a Trade Union Council are totally opposed to the latter, as we see it as a road to privatisation. We have prevailed on our two local CCGs to be most vigilant in this respect.

From 2016 private companies will be able to bid to supply goods, services and apparatus to the NHS we envisage that the privateers will come in with artificially low bids initially to beat direct departmental quotes until they have eliminated internal sources of supply. We have prevailed on the CCGs to insert a clause in their respective constitutions to use only direct administrative staff and to only use outside suppliers when items and services cannot be furnished internally.

We constantly have stated once the profit motif overcomes compassion then the entire ethos of the NHS has been destroyed.

We are urging the public to back our campaign by raising your concerns in the following ways.

Make your concerns known to your GP.

Join your local participation group at your surgery.

Correspond with the chairman of the Chorley and South Ribble CCG and chairman of Greater Preston CCG to express your concerns at: NHS Lancashire Unit, Jubilee House Lancashire Business Park, Centurian Way, Leyland PR26 6TR.

Major changes are also underway concerning your local hospitals and to ensure we can stem further privatisation then we should all join the Lancashire Teaching Hospital Trust. It costs nothing to join and it will enable you to monitor any privatisation by stealth and raise your objections. Please give them a ring on free phone 0800 073 0663 for an application form or write to Membership Office, Free Post, NAT 12250, Preston, PR2 9BR.

Terry Bayes, President of Preston and South Ribble Trades Union Council

Fox hunters must abide by the law

It seems that our ‘upper crust’ are determined to continue to flout the laws against hunting animals with dogs. They know there is little chance of their being brought to justice with so many of the top law enforcers being hunt members or sympathisers. Even when they are prosecuted by such as the RSPCA these organisations then face a witch hunt for profligate use of their funds.

Well if the police and judiciary won’t act who else will if not these animal welfare charities? The law is the law and must be enforced by the authorities even if they disagree with it.

Jeff McCann, Hoghton

Bus station does not make much

With regard to the car parking charges on the bus station making £1,825,000 a year (letters December 28). May I suggest before he starts making such outlandish comments he should make a Freedom of Information request for the correct information.

The top two floors of the bus station car park are not in use for 46 weeks of the year due to the poor state of repair and are only used as overspill at graduation and Christmas periods so generate little or no income.

The remaining floors may have between 500/600 cars parked on them daily, however, between 7.30am and 6.30pm Monday to Friday not one of the cars pays a penny to park, as they belong to staff at Preston Council who are all given free parking eight hours a day Monday to Friday.

The council has no intention of charging staff to park, the only way they will have to pay is should ownership of the bus station pass to a private developer, and this perk will end when/if the bus station is demolished.

It would appear the maximum number of cars that would pay to park on the bus station would be around 200 per day on all floors, if they are lucky

Jean Ellison, Fulwood