Letters - The NHS is like a battlefield...

The NHS is like a battlefield, the fighting and war being waged between the managers, who are wanting more and more for less and less on one hand, and the workers, nurses, on the other. Although there are other workers in the hospital, its the nurses that run things on a day to day basis on the wards.

Managers are honed in the ruthless and mercantile academies of business and have little or no grasp of human essence, nor do they care. Nurses are caring, hard workers, little schooled in business or management, however they are promoted into positions of management without any training, where they often take some of the worst aspects of the bullying class to their nature. Resistance however is not futile, we now have a specialist unit for our sicker patients and we are expected to work in there now, although most staff have been taken off agreed training that would give us just the basic skills to work there. In response one day, I quickly put round a petition, which spoke of our worry to work in an environment where we had not been trained. Only a handful signed, but I took the argument to management and won, and now training for all ward staff has been agreed.

My colleagues often break down with the stress and pressure of work, particularly at shift leader level. Being a communist, I feel I have an analysis of the pressures at play, the support of my colleagues, and sometimes now work as shift-leader, running the ward, defending staffing levels etc., refusing admissions where the pressure of work would be detrimental to patient care. Of course I am not paid the grade for the work as historically more treacherous and careerist elements worked against their class interests and took the title, role and responsibility of senior nurse ages ago, so now we are all stuck and my refusal to lead without recognition in cash, training and job description changes has long been lost. I campaign against the trade union slugs and organise my colleagues within a general union, only because they offer legal insurance cheaper than any other means, making sure the treachery of their breed is known, and no one looks to them for leadership.

The least advanced, most reactionary and the ones most likely to scab or to denounce revolutionary activity, attended the monthly ward meeting, held the day after the petition had stirred the bosses. On principle, and theoretically, I refused to go, saying the petition stands on its own merits and the bosses will respond wherever and whenever they choose its up to us to decide what our response is when needed. Power is not at the ward meeting, it seems as if the most important decision made is the date of the next ward meeting. However this one element denounced the petition, refused to sign, but took credit for the victory, when victory came, showing how less advanced elements of the class will join revolutionary upswing, when it suits, but without any understanding of process or a class analysis. It is these elements that are denounced as enemies of the class for moving between the forces of labour and management when it suits them, but as moths round a flame they will perish, leaving true revolutionary cadre to work towards and win the next fight.

The fight goes on, and currently we are making gains...


The Digger

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