Health Service Staff Commission

Part of Orders of the Day — Health Services Bill – in the House of Commons at 4:30 pm on 9th June 1980.

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Photo of Mr Frank Haynes Mr Frank Haynes , Ashfield 4:30 pm, 9th June 1980

I am not as worried today as I was in Committee ; because we appear to be getting one or two approving nods from the Government Front Bench. However, I am worried because in Committee the Minister threw the document by the Royal Commission on the National Health Service into the Thames and said that he was not prepared to accept its contents. He said that he and the Government would make up their own minds about what was to happen to the National Health Service. I have seen nods of approval. I hope that that is an encouraging sign.

I sincerely believe that my right hon. and hon. Friends who have contributed to the debate are correct. The Conservative Government made a hell of a mess of the last reorganisation of the Health Service. Some of us were involved in that in one way or another. The lowering of the state of morale which occurred at that time is being repeated. Each individual fears what will happen within the Health Service. The message is loud and clear in my area. People are frightened to death about what will happen this time.

A commission such as that suggested in the new clause would give each individual in the Health Service the opportunity and right to know about and to contribute to the shape of the Service. There is a feeling of bitterness. People remember what happened last time. They are all jockeying for positions in preparation for what is to happen. Certain individuals will be hit, as they were on the last occasion. Jobs will be given to people whose faces fit. I believe that the suggestion in the amendment is correct. I hope that, in the interests of everybody who works in the National Health Service, the Government will consider seriously what has been said.