Emergency motion demands Labour takes a stand on NHS staffing levels

The contemporary resolution we have been promoting for Labour Party conference 2013 was submitted by a number of Constituency Labour Parties, but we still don’t know if it has been accepted or not. Motions to Labour Party conferences are often ruled out of order on the flimsiest grounds – we will see.

Meanwhile, at least one CLP has submitted an emergency motion on the NHS staffing crisis, spurred by the House of Commons health select committee’s 18 September report on the Mid Staffs NHS controversy. We don’t know if this motion has been accepted yet either, but we are publishing it for information!

(Westminster North CLP)

Conference notes the Health Select Committee’s 18 September Report on the Francis Review of the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Public Inquiry.

Conference welcomes proposals obliging Trusts to establish appropriate staffing-levels and to publish actual levels on a regular basis.

Conference notes that the Safe Staffing Alliance (supported by patients’ organisations, the Royal College of Nursing and Unison) recommends a ratio of not more than 8 patients to 1 Registered Nurse.

Until private providers are removed from the NHS, they too must abide by staffing standards and not be allowed to hide behind protests of commercial confidentiality.

We welcome the Select Committee’s ban on ”gagging clauses” (which prevent staff speaking out on behalf of patients) and believe that this ban must be equally applied to private providers.

While the Coalition Government tries to blame staff and patients for the pressure on our NHS, this Conference recognises that the underlying problems are caused by underfunding and understaffing for which the Government is itself responsible.

Conference calls for a commitment that Labour will reverse the Coalition’s cuts in spending and ensure that proper staffing-levels permit the safe and humane standard of care to which all patients should be entitled.

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