‘We all have the right to fight NHS cuts.’
– Karen Reissmann campaign
‘…this is about investment not cuts.’
– Manchester Mental Health & Social Care Trust Chief Executive, Sheila Foley
On the rare occasions when chief executive Sheila Foley has been bothered to defend her organisation she’s insisted, ‘…this is about investment not cuts.’ But given the trust’s hamfisted attempt to silence its critic, it’s no surprise that the Karen Reissmann campaign is winning the battle to label Manchester Mental Health and Social Care Trust’s ‘Change in Mind’ programme an attack on the NHS.
Mental health is the NHS’s poor relation. But cuts to services in Manchester, even in the heavily indebted third worst performing trust of its kind, would appear to go against the flow of recent government initiatives. Last month saw the government commit to providing access to psychological therapy for everyone who needs it: a first. Today £31m was allocated to removing children from adult mental health wards.
Reissmann, a member of the revolutionary socialist SWP, acknowledged this apparent contradiction in her speech to the Stand Up For Journalism rally, joking that at least you knew where you were with an anti-NHS Tory government.
Nevertheless, there are echoes of Lib Dem MP John Leech’s Christie Hospital campaign. And with Sheila Foley holidaying in Dubai, the scaremongers have the floor.