Press release on behalf of Keep Our NHS Public – for immediate use (20 July 2019)
The celebrity Stephen Fry has today formally lent his support to our petition launched in partnership with Change.org which calls for the NHS to be excluded from US trade deals by tweeting out a link:
The point of making the above little film is this: the US wants to buy the NHS. Seriously! Please sign and share this petition to keep the NHS out of any US trade deal. The NHS will only survive if we fight for it. https://t.co/WpnYzJxcEY
— Stephen Fry (@stephenfry) July 19, 2019
Since it was launched the petition has attracted over 660,000 signatures and is one of the most popular petitions Change have ever seen. Dr Sonia Adesara, the junior doctor who started it on behalf of Keep Our NHS Public says:
“The threat to our NHS is real and here. We cannot underestimate the power of the corporate lobby and financial interests; this is why we need to campaign hard. We need a formal commitment from the government that our NHS, under any future prime minister, must never be a pawn in future trade talks. It is our NHS, and our NHS is not, and should never be, up for sale.”
The NHS entered its 71st year earlier this month and there is still clearly a great deal of support out there for its continuance as a public service, despite the obvious pressures it is under. The government have not ruled out some sort of NHS trade deal in the future, with a spokesperson from the Department of international trade telling Keep Our NHS Public only that:
“In regards to the US in particular, the government has been consistently clear that it is committed to negotiating an ambitious FTA with the US that maintains our high standards for businesses, workers and consumers.”
Dr Tony O’Sullivan, retired paediatrician and Co-chair of Keep Our NHS Public says:
“660,000 people have given Johnson and Hunt a clear message: ‘Keep your private hands off our unparalleled public national health service’. The NHS must NOT be subjected to trade deal concessions – with Trump or with any other country. This includes essential drugs, clinical equipment procurement, technical advances, finance, data and management systems. We need one big political shout out: Keep private hands off our NHS.”
Campaigners, members of the public and indeed celebrities have now committed to maintaining the pressure on the government not to split it up and sell it off to foreign markets so the health service endures for at least another 71 years.
For media enquiries please contact Samantha Wathen on 07776047472 or email us at [email protected]
Spokespeople are available for broadcast interview.