Barts Health, the largest NHS trust in England, is now in special measures following a Care Quality Commission (CQC) report into Whipps Cross Hospital. The trust was formed as a result of a merger between Barts and the London, Newham University Hospital and Whipps Cross in 2013. The chief executive, Peter Morris; the chief nurse and the chair of the trust have all resigned with more likely to follow.
The independence referendum last September showed that people in Scotland want to see radical change. While the left has grown out of that movement, the Scottish National Party (SNP) has quadrupled in size. Its membership has just passed 100,000, which means one person in 50 in Scotland is now a member. The latest polls show an 18 point SNP lead over Labour and predict they’ll win 47 seats to Labour’s ten.
Bibi Netanyahu is not so popular in the White House following his spat with US president Barack Obama over Iran’s alleged race to develop nuclear weapons. The Israeli leader is accusing Obama of “giving up” because he is pursuing talks with Iran over its nuclear programme.
Another month and another scandal with the banks — now centred on HSBC. After seven years of being told that “reforms” had been made, a “new start” acted on, “fundamental changes in the culture” made, new “super clean” managers with “openness and integrity” brought in…and we are back to the same old corrupt world of British banking.
Research conducted by BBC Radio 5 Live has found that police used taser guns on 431 children in 2013. The youngest was just 14, while a child of 11 was threatened with a taser gun. The guns were introduced under New Labour home secretary David Blunkett in 2003. They carry a charge of 50,000 volts.
An attempt to restrict access to abortion in the UK was thwarted last month — but the vote was too close to be ignored. Fiona Bruce MP, the Tory chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Pro-Life Group, put up an amendment to the serious crime bill, which would have criminalised abortion on the grounds of foetal sex. She was defeated by 292-201.
Last month Socialist Review reported that NHS workers would be back out on strike in January and February. As we went to press all the unions involved had called off the action following negotiations. Unite and Unison officials are claiming that the offer is the best they could achieve.