The Accidental Campaigner
James Corbett is an English teacher. He’s quite ordinary really. And yet here he is, on day 37 of a 46 day walk from Glasgow to London, collecting signatures for his petition to save the core of the NHS.
“I didn’t know or understand about the changes to the 2012 Health and Social Care Act until quite recently. It removes the legal responsibility of the sec of state for the diagnosis, treatment, and care of UK citizens. That means that it’s not the govt’s duty anymore to protect our health. It opens the door to private companies to come and make money from us when we are suffering. They’re concerned about their shareholders rather than the patients. This major change wasn’t included in the Tory party manifesto of 2010. The social care bill had already been drafted – this omission was snide. It feels like a sly move. This made me realise that I was going to walk, I was going to get on my feet.
“One of the reasons I started from Glasgow is because my good friend Donny (from Glasgow) – his wife has cancer. She’s very, very ill. She’s suffering. My neighbour’s son has cerebal palsy. One of my closest friends spent 4 months in hospital. And what unites them all is that they didn’t have to worry about the financial implications of their treatment. An Americanised health care system would have financially crushed them. With Donald Trump discussing the NHS as part of a trade deal, are the vultures circling?”
I’ve seen passionate people standing outside Chorley Hospital for years, campaigning for a 24 hours A+E. What I am doing in comparison is nothing. I was inspired by the Chartists, by the Jarrow marchers. The 7 point Charter got rejected twice – but here we are in 2019 with 6 of the 7 points now in effect. I am simply a delivery boy for the petition, I am carrying a message. I couldn’t have got this far without the overwhelming support of all the people out there whom I have met and spoken to who really care about the NHS. The NHS actually really unites us all, no matter our political persuasion; UK citizens are really passionate about the NHS and what it stands for.”
Swan supports James in his passionate plea to protect our health and social care system from massive structural damage. Stand in solidarity with James by signing his petition and adding your voice: https://www.change.org/p/every-leader-of-every-party-in-parliament-save-the-nhs-march-to-parliament-free-health-care-for-all?recruited_by_id=d65c9fb0-d8c9-11e7-8722-39b60f9673c6