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Peter Lamb ‘condemns’ what he says is the ‘Tory underfunding of the NHS” and its impact on Crawley

Just as the party leaders sat down for their first hustings of the campaign (at Oriel High School), more news from Labour.

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Data that has been obtained under a Freedom of Information Act has revealed a huge increase in the number of cancelled operations caused by staffing issues and equipment failures OR in other words for non-clinical reasons.

According to the information obtained, last year, 78,981 operations were cancelled nationally. These operations, some classed as urgent, were cancelled at the last minute often after the patient had already arrived at hospital.

Figures for Surrey and Sussex NHS Trust show that there has been close to a 30% increase in these cancelled operations over the past three years affecting a total of 3397 local people.

Commenting on the findings, Labour Parliamentary Candidate Peter Lamb said:

“The simple truth is that under the Tories, patients always wait longer for vital care, but when you see really local figures like these you realise it is a price being paid by way too many decent people right here in Crawley.

“This is about the lack of proper funding for our NHS. With over 100,000 staff vacancies nationally and increasing cuts to the Capital Budgets the staff that remain come under enormous pressure. It’s only thanks to our amazing NHS staff that these figures aren’t worse. They are clearly doing their best every day, but without adequate funding their hands are tied.

“That’s why this general election is about the future of the NHS and ensuring quality care for all.  Only Labour will fully fund our NHS and safeguard it from a Trump deal sell off that could cost the NHS millions every week.”

Jonathan Ashworth MP, Labour’s Shadow Health and Social Care Secretary, said: “That so many more people in pain and distress are forced to endure cancelled operations, including increasingly on the day they were supposed to have treatment, is a shameful indictment of a decade of Tory cutbacks running our NHS into the ground.”

Henry Smith

Henry Smith MP: Kickstarting the recovery

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As the challenges of COVID-19 continue to be addressed, the scale of the response across the nation needs to have long-lasting effects.

The Kickstart scheme launches this week to widen job opportunities for young people and I urge employers in Crawley to sign up.

Participating firms will be able to offer young people between 16 and 24 years of age who are claiming Universal Credit a six-month work placement that is fully funded by the Government.

The scheme will see Government pay all of the young persons’ age-relevant National Minimum Wage, National Insurance and pension contributions for 25 hours a week, which the employer can top up if they chose to.

Companies will also be paid £1,500 for each young person they take on as part of the initiative, to support training or other associated costs.

Kickstart is a vital part of the Government’s Plan for Jobs and I hope local employers will participate.

Young people are more likely to have been furloughed than the population as a whole, and we cannot allow them to be left behind as a result of the pandemic.

Creating jobs and helping young people develop the skills to access them is essential. Interested employers can find out more information via: www.gov.uk/kickstart

Henry Smith MP
Crawley Constituency

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