Save Greater Manchester mental healthcare
Matt Kilsby, Salford Socialist Party
More than 100 service users, trade unionists, workers and members of the public attended a public meeting on 1 October to discuss and build the campaign to save mental health services in Salford and Manchester.
As previously reported in the Socialist, Greater Manchester West NHS Mental Health Trust is pressing ahead with proposals to cut jobs and remove vital drop-in services and community groups for service users across Salford. This is before service users are consulted.
In Manchester, a 20% funding cut will cost around 40 jobs and affect over 3,000 service users.
After the meeting was addressed by Steve North, Socialist Party member and secretary of Salford Unison local government branch, angry service users queued up to explain why these attacks on mental health services are so despicable.
Vee Ball, a carer for her husband and prominent activist in the recently formed United Services Users Committee, told the meeting that the services under threat are absolutely vital.
If not for the drop-in centres and community groups, there would be no respite for carers and service users. Vee added that “our campaign to keep our services is about saving lives”.
The meeting was clear that we need to unite our campaign across Salford and Manchester to ensure that the working class and the most vulnerable in our cities are not made to pay the price for the failure of capitalism.