Saturday, 6 April 2013

PRESS RELEASE - Andrew Cooper's speech at the 'Reclaim our NHS Demo' in York Saturday 6th April 2013

This is a day for unity in our opposition to the creeping privatisation of our NHS, but I will say this. It would have been more difficult for the Coalition Govt to introduce these changes if a previous government hadn’t opened the door to privatisation. By changing the NHS from a services provider to a commissioner of services it gave a far greater role to the private sector in the NHS. Hospital Trusts increasingly contracted out services to the private sector. Public money supported the extortionately expensive Private Finance Initiative used to build hospitals with no reasonable alternative funding source provided by govt. Unfortunately there are many other examples of the creeping privatisation of the NHS allowed under a previous govt.

The Coalition’s view of the Health service is very narrow and infact NHS to them stands for a Narrow Health Service. One where the Health Service delivered by the public sector narrows and one where the private, profiteering sector just keeps on growing.

The Green Party is 100% behind a publicly funded, publicly managed and publicly delivered National Health Service focused on prevention of illness, the promotion of good health and the treatment of those in need whatever their income or background. Such a National Health Service is the hallmark of a civilised society. One which invests taxation to the benefit of the public not one which uses peoples taxes to pay the profits of shareholders .

We know that when the private sector gets involved in the delivery of public services that there will always be a tension between the need to deliver good quality care and the need to provide a dividend to shareholders. Something will have to give be that staff wages, specialist equipment or even lifesaving drugs. Will we be faced with a situation where increasingly the cost of delivering vital health services will be the deciding factor to an even greater degree than it is at the moment.

We now need to broaden the Coalitions narrow vision of the NHS to one which inspires and fits with the expectations and values of our nation

The National Health Service is a whole and holistic service not one where the public sector picks up only the parts which the private sector finds too difficult, problematic or simply unprofitable

The National Health Service is a public service not one for private profit

The only ‘shareholders’ who should benefit from the National Health Service should be the public who fund it.

The initials ‘CCG’ should not stand for Clinical Commissioning Groups. In the NHS ‘CCG’ should mean Citizens Care Guaranteed.

Friday, 5 April 2013

PRESS RELEASE - Cass Whittingham selected as Greens Third Council Candidate for the Kirkburton Ward

Green Clrs Robert Barraclough, Cass Whittingham and Derek Hardcastle

Grange Moor Parish Councillor Cass Whittingham has been selected by the Green Party as their Candidate for the 2014 Kirklees Council Elections. Cass will be contesting the third seat in the Kirkburton Ward and if she succeeds she will join Derek Hardcastle and Robert Barraclough as one of our local representatives on Kirklees Council. Cass has been a Parish Councillor for the Grange Moor/Little Lepton area since 2009. She topped the poll in her Parish Council Ward in 2011 and is an active School Governor and a founding member of the new Grange Moor Community Association. Cass lives in Grange Moor with her husband David and she has 2 daughters attending local schools.

“I live locally and have a very real stake in its future. I have been involved in various projects. These have been little improvements such as extending the barrier at the end of the snicket near Grange Moor primary school to bigger projects such as trying to get traffic calming within the village. I have been involved in planning community events within Grange Moor such as the Jubilee Picnic and Christmas Fair and most recently helping to establish the Grange Moor Community Association. Being a Parish Councillor has helped give me the confidence to do these things and I am ready to work with Robert and Derek at the Kirklees level. If there are any local issues I can help you with please give me a call or drop me an email.”

Councillor Robert Barraclough said, "I've worked with Cass on the Parish Council and I know that she is be a hard working community campaigner and is a great asset to our team"

Councillor Derek Hardcastle added, "Cass is not afraid to speak her mind at council meetings and as someone who lives locally with children at local schools she has a real stake in our community and a genuine concern for our area which goes beyond party politics"

Mobile - 07813 184469 email –

Monday, 1 April 2013

PRESS RELEASE - Greens choose local campaigner to stand for Newsome Council seat

l to r - Cllrs Julie Stewart-Turner, Graham Simpson, Karen Allison and Cllr Andrew Cooper
 Kirklees Green Party have chosen local campaigner Karen Allison to stand in the Newsome Ward in the 2014 Kirklees Council Elections.

Karen will be standing as the Green Party Candidate when Councillor Graham Simpson’s term of office ends in May 2014. She has been a member of the Green Party in Newsome for the last 15 years and has been an active leaflet deliverer, canvasser, has helped on Green Party clean ups and the annual volunteer Christmas Bus Service

Karen said,

“I know why the Green Party has been elected in the Newsome Ward in every election since 1996 and it is down to the commitment and hard work the team do on behalf of local people. It is a privilege to be selected to stand as a local councillor in such a strong area for the Green Party and I feel ready for the challenge.

Councillor Graham Simpson said,

“ I have been a Green Party Councillor for fourteen years now and I feel the time is right for me to step aside. I have worked alongside Karen for many years and l know she has the ability and enthusiasm to represent the people of Newsome Ward”.

Green Party Leader Councillor Andrew Cooper said

“Graham has been a committed Green Party Councillor, who has served on the Kirklees Cabinet and helped secure millions of pounds of government funding to improve Kirklees Council properties. I know he will still be a key part of our local team even though he will no longer be a Kirklees Councillor following the 2014 Local Elections”