Hundreds turn out for Carlisle public services cuts rally
Last updated at 15:22, Monday, 24 January 2011
Hundreds of protesters gathered in Carlisle city centre for a rally against cuts to public services on Saturday.
People with placards, banners and whistles marched through the streets before heading to the Carlisle Cross to hear speeches from unionists.
The crowd was in a feisty mood, offering support to the speakers and deriding Government strategy.
One of the biggest cheers of the event went to Kevin Brown, Fire Brigade Union regional secretary.
He said: “We don’t need lectures from politicians on the ‘Big Society’, it’s they who need lectures on what the real world is.
“After the Second World War our parents and grandparents built a big society at a time when the national debt was five times higher than it is now. They created the NHS, the welfare state and they built millions of affordable homes.”
Christine Wharrier, a nurse at West Cumberland Hospital, talked about fears for the future of the NHS and warned that patient care would suffer as a result of attempts to save money.
She said the administrative job losses which have been described as back room would hit low-paid workers.
Ms Wharrier urged the public to remember that Cumbria’s hospitals were their hospitals and concluded: “They say you only live once, well, you only die once too.
“If they make a mistakes with this there’s no chance of bringing you back. Fight these cuts as strongly as you can.”
The demonstration was organised by the Northern Public Services Alliance, which was launched by the Trade Union Congress last year.
Representatives from council workers union Unison, the teachers union NASUWT and the Public and Commercial Services Union were all out in force.
The Northern Public Services Alliance accuses the Government of having a ‘slash and burn’ approach to the public services.
A number of alternative ways to boost treasury coffers were pushed during the rally.
Among them were clamping down on tax evasions and stopping tax relief for the wealthy.
Demonstrators were told to keep momentum and do what they can to pressure the Government into a u-turn.
Simon Elliot, regional organiser for the Public and Commercial Services Union, told the News & Star he had been impressed with the Carlisle spirit.
He said: “It was absolutely superb – quite inspirational to be honest.
“You’re never quite sure what to expect and how many people will turn up but there were four or five hundred people here and the atmosphere was very determined.”
First published at 11:45, Monday, 24 January 2011
Published by http://www.newsandstar.co.uk
Have your say
Dave i feel you got it a bit wrong as I certainly have not criticised the turn out with the Protest because I only wished there had been thousands out there not just a few hundred.What people cannot see is that by voting we still do not have a true democracy because they are each the same mix as it swings only between 3 Parties the last of which did not get in by majority vote. Cons have always been just that and always have lambasted the poorer end of Society. Actually no, it swings between two Parties each of same ilk New Labour has been back door Cons, and then we have Cons., whilst Libs are weak but destructive also as Farming community have said at the outset in a supplement of Cumberland News some time back. If we were truly Free men of our Land as are or were the Gypsies free to roam the lands we would not be in this controlled mess, then it is democracy. There would be no torturing or imprisonments. Egypt peoples know what the score is.
Well Pete I didnt say I didnt read the local paper I merely stated that On whatever night or nights I did read the paper I didnt see the article about the march.
You appear not to like this or the last government so I am unsure where your convictions lie.
Hopefully those who voted for the conservatives and are now suffering the effects of their policies will not vote for them next time around!
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