Monday, March 31, 2008

Well done to health marchers-Only the start

I couldn't make it to the Health service demonstration on Saturday in Dublin due to family commitments but hats off to those who took part. The Health Service Unions represent those who work at the coal face of Irish health every day. They took the initiative on Saturday, and were joined in strength by the Labour Party and others on the left.

The highlight of the day I believe was the speech by Kilkenny resident Conor MacLiam, husband of the late Susie Long whose tragic death brought so much of the injustice and inequlaity of the health servie to the fore. Conor gave a fantastic interview on the Sue Nunn show on KCLR local radio this morning, and made it clear that he believes that this campaign should continue. I hope to be there next time, and we owe that to Susie and all those who have suffered at the hands of this unjust system.

Labour Leader Eamon Gilmore also joined the ongoing weekly picket at the Mater Hospital in my old constituency of Dublin Central. Most importantly, the picket highlights the apalling conditions in the A&E department in the hospital. My late brother in law Gregg Flannery passed away in that unit three years ago, and if ever I needed a clear example of the disgrace of the system, it was the sight of his family members sitting on plastic chairs in the hospital yard in the time of their greatest distress because there was nowhere for them inside.

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