After weeks of talks, the government have refused to budge on the question of junior doctors’ contracts, and are ploughing ahead with their attempts to attack the NHS and its staff. As a result, junior doctors across England will be commencing industrial action on Tuesday 12th January. Support the junior doctors in their struggle against Tory cuts.
Junior Doctors across England will be commencing industrial action tomorrow, in opposition to the government’s attempt to impose an unsafe new contract on the medical profession. This is the latest Tory attack against the NHS and its workforce.
The BMA initially suspended its planned industrial action at the start of December and returned to negotiations. Over the last few weeks, however, in the course of these with the government, those representing the junior doctors have encountered nothing but intransigence.
The reality is that the Tories, as the political representatives of the capitalist class, have no option but to impose austerity. Workers such as the junior doctors, in turn, have no choice but to turn their 98% ballot mandate into action.
Despite repeated attempts by the Tory-supporting press to vilify the junior doctors, support for the doctors’ struggle remains strong. Indeed, the latest smear by Murdoch’s gangsters, who have tried to portray the junior doctors as a champagne-swilling elite, horribly backfired as medics took to social media posting pictures of their humble lifestyles – a vivid contrast to the lives of luxury lived by the Tories and their friends in the City of London.
At the same time, the right-wing media have vitriolically attacked leading members of the junior doctors’ struggle for their links to labour movement and support for Corbyn. But, again, the mud does not stick, as there is a great deal of sympathy from across the public for the doctors and their fight to protect the NHS. Workers in other trade unions have enthusiastically offered their support, knowing that the junior doctors’ battle is part of a wider struggle against the Tories and their austerity.
Join the pickets!
Socialist Appeal supporters and members of the Marxist societies across the country will be out on the picket lines tomorrow, offering our full support and solidarity to the junior doctors in their fight. We encourage all our readers to visit their nearest hospital where possible to give your support to those on strike.
Details of the planned actions taking place over the next month:
The action will begin with an emergency care-only model, which will see junior doctors provide the same level of service that happens in their given specialty, hospital or GP practice on Christmas Day. It will then escalate to full walk-outs. The action as proposed is:
Emergency care only — 24 hrs from 8am Tuesday 12th January to 8am Wednesday 13 January
Emergency care only — 48 hrs from 8am Tuesday 26th January to 8am Thursday 28 January
Full withdrawal of labour — from 8am to 5pm Wednesday 10th February
The aim is to picket all major hospitals in England on all three days of proposed action. Pickets will be in the vicinity of the main entrances and will start at 8am, continuing until at least 12.30pm. However, many picket sites will continue into the evening, especially at the larger hospitals.
Along with the pickets there will be parallel “Meet the Doctors” events at nearby transport stops or public spaces. Those on the picket line can direct you to these events, and to other local events planned on the day.
- A full list of picket lines and other events relating to the junior doctors’ strikes can be be found here and here.