Tell us what you think

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Why do you want to see public services run for people not profit? Tell us your story here.

We'll use your comments to help make the case for public ownership - look out for your thoughts on our homepage!

Thanks for telling us what you think.

Photo used under Creative Commons licensing, thanks to anw.fr.

Comments

THARAHA KAMALANATHAN replied on

protect our communities and our health services from the privatiser FOREVER.

Tara dalton replied on

I received a covid19 test geeked out for Royal Mail to picked it up was confirmed between 7/4 the next day done the test three weeks later it’s still sitting on my kitchen side then tried to get another test as haven’t been feeling to well and it won’t let me So I’m not happy as done the test and nobody collected even thow I have it confirmed of pickup

Hilary Saunders replied on

How can MPs represent the interests of their constituents, if they vote NOT to have the right to scrutinise trade deals? Perhaps it would be worth compiling a list of all the MPs who voted against the scrutiny amendment, so that We Own It supporters can let their MP and social media and local media know what they think about this.

Michèle replied on

Is it worth pushing HMG to increase sick pay so poorly paid workers (many of them in the care sector) can afford to stay off work when they have Covid. This would help us all control the virus. If we can splash cash on meals vouchers we can pay decent sick pay.

Ros Wain replied on

This is madness and our lives depend on it.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/jul/02/uk-set-to-award-covid-19-testing-contracts-worth-5bn-to-private-bidders

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/health/coronavirus-testing-lighthouse-labs-nhs-deaths-delay-a9589381.html

The government’s job is to protect its citizens. There are public health experts and facilities with years of experience of test, trace and isolate already within the system who ensure that results get quickly to those who need to take action. How much better for us all to give them £5bn to expand. Not give it to private companies, whose failures already seem to have cost us lives, to start from scratch. It is simply more evidence of privatisation by the back door, the result of which is fragmentation of the NHS which is endangering citizens not protecting them.

Michael Young replied on

Exactly ...

yvonne mustapha replied on

l qualified as a ( Mature ) Dental Hygienist from Kings College Dental Hospital, London, then worked at this hospital in The High Risk Dept for one year,which l loved, until the funding ran out. l then made my way into the world of Private / NHS Dentistry. My eyes were sharply opened as to the poor cross infection control in many if not most Dental practices, The emerging Large Corporate Dental practice, were the worst.

l was surprised / dismayed at not only the un-supervised inadequate running of these places , with lack of lnstruements, each surgery having to quietly borrow from each other, at times seeing the stressed or( lazy ) nurse only having time to just spraying and wiping with a paper wipe the used borrowed lnstrument

l bought and only used my own lnstruments, this being the only way to have enough good sterile instruments for my patients.

Often requests to borrow them being made from other Dentists /nurses who either did not have the correct one needed,or just only a few old scalers

However like most Dental Practices, the Reception usually with a tidy clean front and a reassuring friendly receptionist was reassuring.

l can count on my hand only 3 Dental Practices that l would go for Dental Treatment.The third one being only Private, and expensive but with very good High Cross Infection Control , or at least it was when l worked there a few years ago

l am thinking of writing a book on my experience of working as a Dental Hygienist. what l and the many other Dental Hygienists consider scams, cross infection problems and difficult unpleasant Dentist, Hopefully before any other Dental Hygienist gets one published

Graham Hillman replied on

Water Utilities: The Scottish Government have now made Covid 19 testing as Mandatory at Water Treatment plants. They can because they own the Utility. The English Water Utilities are Private and ate they doing the same testing as part of Track & Trace. Ask that question and see what answer you get gh

Alex Bellamy replied on

Want to donate but your Paypal donation button is kaput!

Roger Lallemant replied on

I would hope you are aware of what I say, but if not, I think it is a very revealing example of government disingenuousness. In Lansley's 2012 NHS bill, there was a clause that said 'private work should not exceed core NHS work', or words to that effect. It was phrased in legalese, as it always is, to confuse the issue for the layman. However, when interpreted, it meant that private work should not exceed 49%. In 2012 private work was 4%. I think that single clause says it all, deliberately hidden in legal jargon.

Mrs Julia Ramsay replied on

Just appalled of news that Serco has been awarded another contract.

It’s like giving failing Grayling another job he won’t complete in a timely or satisfactory manner.

John Francis Moss replied on

Private is immoral & poor service.

Public is fair & good service.

Some folk might not agree with this.

Generally though, public is best.

In a vote public would win.

Kev hutchinson replied on

Serco found 18000 staff in just two weeks to set up track and trace and delivering this service for less money than the civil service would do , check facts , you are fake news !

Alice replied on

Hi Kev,

Despite being in control of the system for mere months, Serco has already proven itself inadequate.

The head of the track and trace scheme has said that the contact tracing system won’t be fully operational until September or October. The Serco CEO himself doesn't seem convinced it will work either. The Guardian revealed yesterday that he wrote in an email: “If it succeeds … it will go a long way in cementing the position of the private sector companies in the public sector".

As of June 3, Serco's tracers had contacted just 1,749 people, of the 4,456 confirmed Covid-19 cases that had been reported to the scheme.

Staff working on the track and trace scheme have described themselves sitting idle, without contact from their supervisors, with one claiming they worked for 38 hours without making a single phone call, instead spending the time watching Netflix.

All of our sources are linked in the text beneath the petition here: https://weownit.org.uk/save-lives-scrap-serco-now

Our campaign is supported by public health experts, including Allyson Pollock, Clinical Professor of Public Health and director of the Newcastle University Centre for Excellence in Regulatory Science, John Ashton, former director of public health, David McCoy, professor of global public health and director of the Centre for Public Health at Queen Mary University of London - and by 9 different healthcare campaigns and organisations.

Best wishes,

Alice and the We Own It team

David Bailey replied on

I am sorry and somewhat disappointed that I was unable to join the training session on how to persuade my MP to protect the NHS. The first was a technical issue on my part. The second was I was not allowed to unmute. The host wouldn't allow it for some strange reason.

Alice replied on

Hi David,

We're sorry to hear that you weren't able to join the training session. Because we have such a high number of attendees for these sessions, we automatically mute all participants in the call, and then unmute people when they indicate they want to speak during appropriate moments. We have to do this or we would have many people talking over each other!

If you want to get in touch with us about contacting your MP, please send an email to info@weownit.org.uk and we'd be more than happy to help!

Thank you for being part of our movement for people, not profit- and for defending out NHS!

Best wishes,

Alice and the We Own It team

Tom in NW London replied on

We can't wait in the (forlorn) hope of a Socialist government, so I would like all the workers in the NHS and other public services to TAKE THEM OVER; beginning with an all-out strike and then seizing control.

Jenifer Devlin replied on

I wrote to my MP asking for a meeting on zoom, which he has agreed to, but he doesn't want anyone else on the call and has asked that the others contact him individually for meetings. How would you advise that I respond?

Alice replied on

HI there,

That's brilliant- thank you for taking action and arranging a meeting with your MP! If you could send a quick email to info@weownit.org.uk, we'll be in touch about following up.

Best wishes,

Alice

Ben Harrop replied on

Hello. I am currently working on a farm and unfortunately unable to attend the webinar training session. Will the materials or recordings of the webinars be available online for self study?

Alice replied on

Hi Ben-

Thanks for getting in touch about the trainings! We can to email you resources to read through as you're unable to make a session- could you email info@weownit.org.uk, and I can send them your way?

Thank you for standing up to defend our NHS!

-Alice

Peter Draper replied on

I agree completely state ownership is best. But it is lack in quality of British managers leadership that always causes national ownership to fail. A clear example of this is our motor industry. The pnly way this is going to work properly and efficiently is for British workers to have either German or Japanese management. It works, think Nissan, Toyota, Rolls Royce, Mini.

Raymond Blackhurst replied on

I often receive emails from We Own It or other outside agents who must work closely with your organisation and today I received an email inviting me to an event to persuade my MP George Howarth (Labour) for Knowsley in Merseyside to Protect the NHS from trade agreements with other countries such as the USA

Sadly I am caring for a disabled lady and I haven’t been very well myself with mental health problems as I get very depressed and I won’t be able to take part

The NHS is an organisation close to my heart as I have needed treatment a number of times in my life and I have signed petitions and sent emails on this subject at the behest of other web based organisations such as Change.com

Yours

Raymond Blackhurst

Alice replied on

Dear Raymond,

Thank you for taking action for the NHS and being part of our campaign to protect our public services and reverse privatisation!

Just to clarify, the event will be an online meeting and not in person during lockdown. We totally understand that you are not able to attend, and your support for the campaign means a lot.

Take care, and best wishes-

Alice and the We Own It team

Adam Hiley replied on

https://www.newchartistmovement.org.uk We all need to start resisting this authoritarian Government and now from this lockdown to potentially selling the NHS off to Trump in a any trade deal this Government along with Labour & the Lib Dems need getting rid of https://www.getborisout.com

Don Clarke replied on

* Question 1: Pay differentials will be a major barrier to recovery post-pandemic. We have seen how important the lowest paid amongst us have been during this crisis. Clapping them every Thursday is embarrassing whilst pay differentials remain as they are, and I don't see how we can just go back to what was the status quo. Not everyone can be paid as much as the CEO currently, but the CEO can be paid less, and the lowest paid can be paid more. How do we seriously address the plain injustice of pay diffrentials, post-pandemic? Perhaps organisations in public ownership will be far more able to limit damaging differentials than private sector firms?

* Question 2: We've seen what happens when true Socialists get close to power: the media and the establishment close ranks and control communications to the people, unjustly and falsely discrediting Socialist leaders, and Socialist ideas like public ownership. How can we ensure the debate revolves around policy and ideas, and not falsehoods perpetrated by the media and unscrupulous opposition politicians, and ensure that the media presents a balanced picture to the nation?

* Question 3: Historically, globally, there was a balance of power between the nobility, the clergy, and the merchants. Government by the people, in time, became a fourth power. Today, we find the oligarch merchants have risen in power beyond what is healthy for the great mass of the people. Is recovery from this pandemic the great opportunity for us to redress the balance globally, in favour of government by the people, and in favour of people-oriented ideas like public ownership?

Alan Bond replied on

The latest 'Panorama' programme from the BBC reveals that this government has lied and lied again about PPE for our health care people. This is quite apart from the tardy response to a threat that was clear as early as January of this year. In addition, they have been attacking the BBC from every quarter since they came to power ten years ago and here we have the BBC allowing the tories to use the service as a propaganda tool to peddle the lies about their response to the pandemic. The BBC should be refusing to carry out their wishes and tell them to clear off and get one of their cronies in the commercial TV sector to screen their lies and disinformation. I just bet they would all say NO. We have the biggest death rate from Covid-19 of any European Country but the clearest contrast is with New Zealand where the government reacted swiftly and deaths from Covid-19 there have been minimal. Even our part privatised NHS is doing a magnificent job despite the odds being stacked against them by a callous and uncaring government. It proves beyond doubt that private enterprise cannot be relied on to keep us safe in times such as these and we need to start rolling back the frontiers that have allowed to greedy to leech off the rest of us.

Jules replied on

Many of the assertions against private companies and "profit" are demonstrably not true.

In fact "not for profit" can be counterproductive.

Without a profit motive, companies are often wasteful.

Even within private companies, individuals and departments can be wasteful - if they deal with "not their own money".

Government departments and Agencies are amongst the worst.

Only when there is close scrutiny by elected Reps - and who understand business and numbers - does the public sector stop wasting money.

None of this denies that there are "bad" private companies.

They need scrutiny too - and competition - to keep them "honest".

But problems occur mostly when a sector becomes dominated by a handful of providers.

So called "economies of scale" get overtaken by monopolistic practices and lack of customer care ....

.... much like most of the monopolistic pubic sector.

Alice replied on

Privatisation of public services has been proven to waste a huge amount of taxpayer money. It’s the public's taxes and bills that get wasted on shareholder profits, extra admin costs, and higher interest rates on borrowed money.

Here's a breakdown of the amount of money wasted each week across different sectors:

Rail - £1 billion a year or £19 million a week

Buses - £506 million a year or £9.7 million a week

Water - £2.3 billion a year or £44 million a week

Energy - £3.2 billion a year or £61 million a week

NHS - £6.65 billion a year or £128 million a week

For the sources and more info, read our blog here: https://weownit.org.uk/blog/waste-privatisation-we-cant-afford.

We don't believe in bringing back nationalisations of the past- we believe in public ownership fit for the future. You may be interested in reading our proposal for how public services should be run so that they are accountable to the public who use them, and workers who run them: https://weownit.org.uk/when-we-own-it.

Best wishes,

Alice and the We Own It team

Hugh Daniels replied on

The urgent and serious pandemic situation demonstrates clearly the problems with dividing up between public and private services, not least than when the NHS has been so severely depleted of services, staff and beds, especially high dependency ones, the private medicine companies are not available to support the NHS, and they generally avoid getting involved in complex cases, or set urgent need as a priority. They also take away trained staff from the NHS. I could say more too about the need for bus and rail services returning to being public, in the light of the disastrous current services and constantly rising prices and mismanagement.

Sean replied on

The public does not own the BBC.

This campaign is a lie.

Alice replied on

Hi Sean,

Since the BBC is our public broadcaster and is publicly funded, it should be in public control. The rest of the mainstream media is owned and controlled by a handful of billionaires.

We are proposing these reforms so that we can feel that we OWN it:

- Right now the government appoints BBC board members. We need an independent board with a citizens panel to give us a voice, make the BBC more diverse in staff and content, cap excessive pay - and have a stronger role for regional journalism.

I hope that this clarifies why we are running this campaign!

Best wishes,

Alice and the We Own It team

Brian Horn replied on

I'm more than happy, if you feel you 'Own it' to pay for it. It's called freedom of choice. Just don't expect to include the rest of the population, many of whom who no longer see a 'special' role for The BBC.

If I want to watch any live programming on any channel I have to fund the BBC. If I don't pay, even when I choose not to watch the BBC, I am liable to prosecution, how is that fair ?

I don't pay and only stream programming I want to watch. I was brought up watching BBC but now I would never go back.

To me and a growing number, the BBC's funding is an anachronism, it should stand on it's merits or die.

Alice replied on

Hi Brian,

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the BBC with us. What we want is for everyone to feel that they OWN the BBC- to feel represented, and that it is the democratic, publicly owned institution that it was set up to be! We believe that the breadth and quality of the programming that a public broadcaster can produce goes far beyond what a profit motivated company can produce. For example, children's programming is incredibly important and shapes the development of millions- we can't let that become click bait, produced in the interest of making money.

We need a proper process to make sure the BBC has fair, sustainable funding, while protecting vulnerable groups. Just like the NHS, the BBC needs to work for everyone no matter where they live or what their background is. The government should stop funding cuts and pay for over 75s, as they used to, along with low income groups.

I hope that this explains why we are running this campaign!

Kind regards,

Alice and the We Own It team

Stephen Lawlor replied on

It is utterly dismaying to see the hard right attempt to destroy the world’s greatest institution, the BBC. Where else can we hear such a unique mix of culture, history, music, news & so on across radio and TV? Certainly not on the likes of Netflix, that’s for sure.

Just this week I discovered a beautiful radio series by John Shuttleworth, one episode featuring the late Chas Hodges. Where on earth would such a perfect show be found if the BBC didn’t exist?

God bless you, BBC. I’ve loved you and listened to you since childhood and may you always exist, strong and proud - the very best of Great Britain. No other country offers anything remotely as good, and no Tory tea party is going to take this diamond away from the people of Britain and the world.

David Bache replied on

The BBC is one of the world's leading media and news companies. Its respected the world over. Its output promotes all that is best about the UK. The Conservative Government, with its free market beliefs, should value the BBC as a hugely successful marketing company for UK PLC. Instead the Government appears to think that the BBC should become just another commercial broadcaster.

Any change to the BBC's funding should start with a fundamental definition of what the BBC should be. The funding should then be put in place to support this goal. What we seem to have is a bottom up reform of the funding, with no idea of the final goal. The Government's approach is incoherent.

Keith Jackson replied on

The BBC has passed its sell-by date. It is biased towards the British people and only tell us on the news what it wants us to know, and not what is really happening in our country. I have over 600 channels on my TV which costs me over £100 a month. I never watch the BBC channels, I saw most of their films years ago so why should I be forced to pay for a license. The wages they pay are obscene and they are now advertising for non-white people to take jobs offered, this to me is being racist towards the British people. The sooner the BBC is put out to grass, the better

Lynn Evans replied on

I hope if railways are taken back into public ownership, we dont re-privatise when they're rebuilt, and giving them to the privatisers on a golden platter to suck dry and wreck again, making mugs of us public!

Lynn Evans replied on

I hope if railways are taken back into public ownership, we dont re-privatise when they're rebuilt, and giving them to the privatisers on a golden platter to suck dry and wreck again, making mugs of us public!

Richard Dennis replied on

Tired of our national and local assets being stripped off to cowboys and workers and the public having to pay the price through worse services and lost jobs.

One county council has invested a sizable amount of it's pension fund with one cowboy and is facing problems in trying to get it out.

You do not hear much about this on the BBC,so thanks THE GUARDIAN.

Austrian Peter replied on

I have spent the last six years analysing the global financial system and I have written a book about the results; named: The Financial Jigsaw, it is due to be published in Q1 2020. In advance of publication I am offering a free PDF copy of my manuscript upon request to: peter@underco.co.uk.

You may review my updates at https://www.gofundme.com/f/fnahvp-free-book and my book has been serialised at The Burning Platform website over the last 80 weeks, and which is coming to an end soon:

https://www.theburningplatform.com/2019/12/07/the-financial-jigsaw-issue-no-81/

I am convinced that our current neoliberal system is due to spectacularly fail soon and that a New Economy will emerge. Only by re-engineering our failed systems will people yet again regain control of capital and return wealth into the hands of the producers and workers. Our small group here in Somerset, UK is active in promoting our 6 Demands for reform: http://harrogateagenda.org.uk/

greg holmes replied on

I have seen the advance of neo liberalism over the las 30 years (I am 69) it began with Maggie, and really took off under the war criminal (in my opinion) Blair.Remenber liberals are not necessarily libertarians, to steal the NHS bit by bit is what is happening. Water companies owned by foreign interests, huh. We are told we cannot afford these things on the public purse, we bailed out the banks, socialism for the banks, capitalism for the rest of us. Mark Blyth (economist) watch him off YOU Tube, he details the whole corrupt saga, and is very entertaining.

Ant replied on

Virgin Care's suing of the government because of the NHS should be responded by a public boycott of Branson businesses.

When the students protested in 2009/10 over tuition fees when they sited if the tax own by large corporations (starbucks,vodaphone etc) was actually collected there would be no need for any fees. The students would have had a great more traction if the students union called to a boycott of Vodaphone until tax was paid, then no starbucks and so on. People have great power, but only in number. That is why our culture has reduced much of the population to individuals with smart phone (tracking,listening,filming spying device). This has been done in part by divide and rule, constant confusion and distraction

Ant replied on

A government is a tool that can be used to build services and other businesses with public money. Then when the business/service is successful and a necessity any profitable areas can be extracted and virtually given away to the powerful friends of government. Because of this they should be under a microscope of transparency so the public's interest can be protected from exploitation. Instead we live in a world where power hides behind redaction, avocation or lies, lies and damn lies. Meanwhile they want access to everybody's data because they know it leads to and they desire absolute control. This in turn leads to absolute power and absolute secrecy for the powerful. Handy when the absolute corruption inevitably follows.

Any person in position of power responsible for signing off or engineering the giving away of any public asset, more over the jewel that is the NHS, should be publicly exposed and grilled.

Marium Nafisa replied on

I am going to share my heath care experience in USA

Two months ago I fell down in my drive way in Michigan where I now live and sustained multiple fractures. I was taken to the accident and emergency in an ambulance. I pay blue cross and blue shield my health insurance company a premium of $1000 every month with a deductible of $8000. I had to be admitted for surgery and hospitalization. I was asked by the insurance company why I could not be treated in alternate facility and if I could be cared for at home. I had two surgery and was immobilized on both my legs and hand. I had excruciating pain causing my blood pressure to go up to 200/100. The insurance was insistent that this be managed at home. I had not got pre authorization for surgery or hospitalization. The insurance is refusing to pay for 12 day stay in hospital.

Would this have happened in NHS ? I worked for 23 years as a nurse and miss it very much

Please use my case to inform what usa style of health care is like.

If you like I will post my letter here for all to see what is the true face of American health care.

Please share it with wider audience and I will be more than happy to talk to any one about my experience. Let me know how we can use this information to save our NHS.

sorry I could not post my picture.

Jane Simons replied on

Work for the NHS and very proud to do so. Our daughter has received life saving NHS care. Many family members/friends have had NHS treatment /care,and cannot imagine Britain without it. It has to stay.

Colin Sutton replied on

The NHS belongs to the British public . We have paid for it with our National Insurance contributions and Income Tax .It is not government property to sell off to the highest bidder. The NHS is in trouble because our taxes are not being used to support it . Home aid should take priority over foreign aid .Our .7% GDP foreign aid "gift" of £14.5 billion should never happen.Why should we donate 4 times more GDP than the USA.If we paid .18% like the USA we would have over £11 billion to help get our country back on its feet.

Richard Dennis replied on

National and local assets being sold off cheaply and this has meant for example the school meals service has been decimated and prices of electricity,gas and phones etc have gone up to benefit the shareholders.As well as this,how many bankruptcies have we seen as regards Carillion and Southern Cross and the decline of employment rights for workers?

It is time for local and national government to take over these services again.

Jillian Head replied on

Seems like every public facility that has gone into private hands has now got problems and is costing the public both in terms of money and poorer facilities. The money being taken out of public services to enrich the few is obscene.

itude replied on

Why privatising Home Care (help) services simply doesn't work.

I had the privilege of working in the "old system" in which all "home helps" were employed by and managed by Social Services.

Fantastic system, I used to go out and assess people for that and various other services, if I felt they needed it, quick report, took it next door to the home care managers and it was done !.

Any problems, next door again, not that there were many problems.

If there were staff shortages, the home care managers would just "borrow" some from the manager from the neighbouring area, they all worked in the same room !

Only time that ever failed, the home care manager said " right lets go and do it ourselves then" and we did, you never said no to Audrey :)

Then it got in the main privatised, what a mess.The first time I ever used on of the private companies, they sent a pregnant 17 year old girl to do a night watch on an elderly lady whose daughter was exhausted by the process of doing it all herself.

It ended up with her looking after both.

Any problems with private homecare and I had to go to the private homecare liaison person, they then went to the private companies "complaints officer" and so on and on, more than often my concerns just got "lost" in this system.

There are so many more problems and I could go on about Residential Care next, but just one final point, privatisation is inherently flawed in this area.

Contracts were for 4 years, and then put out to tender again.

Any company tendering cannot possibly employ the number of people needed to fulfill that contract, until they know they have it !

Obviously, how can they pay people when they don't know if they get the contract or not.

Each time there is a change it is a total mess, and it takes a very long time to work it out, a couple of years is not unusual.

Of course this is made a lot worse by the competitive nature of this process. A company who may have finally got to some level of competence is hardly likely to "give" all its best workers to another company who have just "pinched" their contract..are they ?

So the silly cycle starts all over again.

It has turned a superb service into an absolute mess, I could go on, but I retired a few years ago, I just couldn't stand it, and that's without even mentioning that my decision making was taken away to some "Funding Panel", who never ever got to see a client of mine.

Oh no, they said no, but I had to tell people that, even though I recommended the services for them

Best not go into the quality of my "replacements" eh :)

Suffice it to say that they could be paid about half of what I was paid, and if they knew no different system, well what could they say ?

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