Jeremy Corbyn’s speech to mark the 70th anniversary of the NHS
Labour will end the growing and tragic consequences of health inequalities, Jeremy Corbyn to say in speech to mark 70th anniversary of NHS this Sunday in Tredegar, birthplace of Nye Bevan.
In a speech laying bare the large and growing inequality in people’s health based on background and income, the Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn will castigate the failed Tory economic model, and point to “clear and mounting evidence that austerity and inequality are killing people”.
Corbyn will set out Labour’s vision for the NHS for the next generation, in a speech on Sunday in the birthplace of NHS founder Aneurin Bevan in Tredegar, Wales.
He will pledge Labour will “declare war on health inequality” and take “action across government” to halt the fall in life expectancy and narrow the “shocking inequality gap in health”.
“We cannot tolerate a situation where one citizen or one community is denied the chance of life and health of another”, Corbyn will say. “That can and must change”.
The Labour leader will also pledge that a Labour government will reverse the decline in the share of national income – or GDP – going into the NHS after falling under eight years of Conservative government.
“Under Labour, the share of national income going into the NHS will rise. That is essential if we are going to meet the health needs of our people, from cancer care to heart disease.”
He will pledge to launch a “national mission to confront the causes of ill health and deprivation”. He is expected to set out how under a Labour government the NHS will join up with other parts of government and communities to fight the causes of ill health which are too often determined by the accident of a person’s background and the geography of where people live.
The Labour leader will talk about the need to transform the economy and living conditions if we are serious about improving the country’s health.
Jeremy Corbyn MP, Leader of the Labour Party, is expected to say:
“If we are serious about improving the nation’s health, then we have to improve people’s pay and living conditions, slash poverty and reduce inequality.
“If we are serious about fulfilling Nye Bevan’s dream of building a society that looks after everybody then we need to transform our economy so that it doesn’t just work in the interests of a few.”
On austerity, inequality and life expectancy, Jeremy Corbyn is expected to say:
“There is clear and mounting evidence that austerity and inequality are killing people.
“For years people were living longer and life expectancy was increasing. That has now ground to a halt and in some parts of the country life expectancy is falling. This is unprecedented.
“Men in the most deprived parts of England today will have nearly 20 fewer years of their lives in good health. And this isn’t about rich London and the South East versus the rest of Britain. There is massive inequality in even the wealthiest parts of our country. Take Kensington and Chelsea, the site of the Grenfell Tower tragedy a year ago, there, life expectancy is 14 years lower for the poorest residents.
“People living in the most deprived areas are five times more likely to suffer from cardiovascular disease and 70% more lung and cervical cancers are diagnosed in those same areas. It’s a long accepted truth that prevention is better than cure. The NHS treats illness but the growing inequalities in our society cause so much of it.
“We need to be as dedicated to the prevention of ill-health as we are dedicated and compassionate to the treatment of ill-health.
“So I make this pledge today, on the 70th anniversary of the foundation of the NHS, Labour will take action across government and the public services to halt the fall in life expectancy and narrow the shocking inequality gap in health across the board.
“Labour will declare war on health inequality, both within communities and across our regions and nations. As a country, we cannot tolerate a situation where one citizen or one community is denied the chance of life and health of another. That can and must change.”
On the 70th anniversary of Windrush, Jeremy Corbyn is expected to say:
“As we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of our National Health Service, we reflect on another important anniversary. On 22 June the Empire Windrush arrived in the UK, carrying hundreds of passengers from the Caribbean. The Windrush Generation were invited to rebuild our country after the Second World War and help to build our National Health Service. We pay tribute to the Windrush Generation, so many of whom worked in our hospitals and gave so much to our country and have been so badly mistreated by this government.”