Bettws surgery closure proposals – an open letter

Here we go again with public service cuts that hit the poorest and most vulnerable members of society the hardest. The Glamorgan Gazette quotes an anonymous ABM Health Board spokeswoman trying to argue that:

  • Bettws is urban – as a geography teacher of 20 years, I can assure her that it does not match any definition of urban I have ever seen, and was clearly classified as rural in the Bridgend’s Rural Development Programme Local Development Strategy October 2009, produced under the auspices of Cllr David Sage (Chair – Bridgend Rural Partnership, Bridgend County Borough Council – lead body)
  • Decisions will be based on providing the best possible service for residents – given the demographics, the socio-economic circumstances of the area, and the already inadequate services to the area in terms of public transport, for example, it is utterly preposterous to consider closing such a facility in such an area. No wonder the anonymous spokeswoman wanted to stay anonymous and expressed concern about the way the situation has been managed. It has, indeed, caused unnecessary alarm and anxiety, because it simply should not be allowed to happen.

If the Labour administrations permit such a punitive service cut to such an area to happen, it will simply serve to underline the growing reality of how far they have abandoned their traditional support base. Socialism was created to look after communities like Bettws and protect such communities from the ravages of market forces and right wing ideology. Are there any socialists left in the Labour Party? I had to turn to the Green Party to find a socialist manifesto. It really is time for socialists in Labour to step up to the plate on issues like this one. We are watching.

Andy Chyba
Bridgend Green Party
Mobile: 078 1066 3241
Email: greens

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