No­body loves them - so let so­ci­ety take back con­trol

Halifax Courier - - The Gift Of Life -

Jennifer Pear­son (“Calderdale’s big­gest ever scan­dal”, Your Say, April 18) rightly con­demns the con­tin­u­ing crip­pling costs of the Pri­vate Fi­nance Ini­tia­tive fund­ing of the Calderdale Royal Hospi­tal in­tro­duced prior to its con­struc­tion in 2001-2 which has led to cur­rent pro­pos­als for the clo­sure of the greatly val­ued Ac­ci­dent and Emer­gency depart­ment. Such plans were at the time strongly op­posed by Calderdale Lib­eral Democrats but en­dorsed by both Labour and Tories. It is there­fore sur­pris­ing that now, de­spite her party’s pre­vi­ous sup­port for PFI, Halifax Labour MP Linda Rior­dan has come out against it (“Overwhelming (ad­verse) Re­sponse to A&E axe plans”, Talk­ing Pol­i­tics last week), stat­ing that it is “all to do with sav­ing money” - a con­ver­sion which smacks of op­por­tunism, though her sup­port of the Lib Dem cause is wel­come, if be­lated. Mrs Pear­son also rightly praises her late, greatly missed hus­band Stephen for his de­ter­mined op­po­si­tion as leader of Calderdale Coun­cil’s Lib Dem group and Mayor of the Bor­ough to PFI fund­ing of the NHS, and I have sim­i­larly warned of the dan­gers of such a pol­icy both in the Courier and else­where (We are all pay­ing the price of PFI, The York­shire Post, Feb27, 2010).

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