Jonathan Ashworth, Labour’s Shadow Health Secretary visits Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight
The visit began at Portsmouth Hospital with MP Stephen Morgan and was followed by a meeting in the Isle of Wight with local Labour Party members and NHS campaigners. Moves to forcibly transfer local services to the mainland have enraged local residents and have prompted large-scale demonstrations and protests. Labour has promised to focus resources on services to provide care closer to home and deliver a truly 21st-century health system.
Mark Chiverton, Chair of Island Labour, said “I welcome Jonathan to the island, and I welcome his commitment that the next Labour government will protect the funding and services of St Mary’s hospital.”
Julian Critchley, Island Labour’s Parliamentary Spokesperson, said: “This is possibly the single most important issue facing islanders in the next election. The Conservative government, the Island’s Conservative MP and the Conservative council are all committed to running down St Mary’s and moving services to the mainland. The Labour Party, from top to bottom, is committed to properly funding St Mary’s and retaining services for Islanders here on the Island. Today’s commitment by Jonathan makes it clear to Islanders at the next election that a vote for Labour is a vote to protect St Mary’s.”
Labour has campaigned actively around the growing problem of rationing of services and medicines across England, it has pledged to take action to address ‘postcode lotteries’ – under Labour the quality of care you receive does not depend on which part of the country you live in.