NHS privatisation: Question to full Council meetings, winter 2020/21

Prompted by the huge growth in “outsourcing” / aka NHS privatisation (see here),  members of KONPNE put formal questions to the SEVEN local North East Councils about privatisation in their area. 
Click here to find out how your Council shaped up…..


Follow decision-making at Council meetings – 2022

KONPNE are keen for people to follow decision-making at local Council meetings – either by tracking Council minutes online or by attending as an observer. It is crucial that we are aware of discussions at specific meetings  (the “Health and Wellbeing” and the “Health Scrutiny” meetings) so that we are able to keep up-to-date with CCG and Council decision-making regarding “Integrated Care Systems,
Are you able to assist with your local Council – one of Newcastle, Northumberland, North Tyneside or Gateshead? The papers of the meetings are in the public domain, and they are all sub-committees of the Council. Also, if you are able to attend, then these meetings are all open to the public – you will not be expected to speak at the meeting, and would be there as an observer. The option of tracking online or attending in person, or a mixture of both, is completely up to you – all is valuable. Whichever option you choose, we would really appreciate some brief feedback by email to konpnortheast@gmail.com or verbally at the KONPNE meeting. This work generally averages out at around two meetings per month per Council – so keeping up-to-date with the minutes and sending a brief update to KONPNE on matters relating to the ICS may take around 1 hour per month….
Please contact us at konpnortheast@gmail.com if you are able to help out – we are hoping to build up a group of KONPNE members who are willing to be involved in this way.
Click on the links to the Council websites listed below to find out the details of specific meetings – especially the dates, as the usual meeting day can change from month to month.
Newcastle City Council (held at Civic Centre, Newcastle)
Health and Wellbeing Board (“Wellbeing for Life”) meet every two months on Tuesdays or Wednesdays at 4.30pm 
Health Scrutiny Committee meet monthly on the second Thursday of the month at 4.30pm
Dates of future meetings, past minutes and further details are at: https://democracy.newcastle.gov.uk
North Tyneside Council (held at the Quadrant, Silverlink)
Health and Wellbeing Board meet every two months on Thursdays at 2pm 
Adult Social Care, Health and Wellbeing Sub-Committee (Scrutiny) meet monthly on the first or second Thursday at 6pm
Dates of future meetings, past minutes and further details are at: https://my.northtyneside.gov.uk/category/184/decision-making
Northumberland County Council (held at County Hall, Morpeth)
Health and Wellbeing Board meet every two months on the second Thursday at 10am
Health and Wellbeing  OSC (Scrutiny Committee) meet monthly / two monthly on the first Tuesday at 1pm
Dates of future meetings, past minutes and further details are at:  http://committee.northumberland.gov.uk/CommitteeList.aspx
Gateshead Council (held at Gateshead Civic Centre)
Health and Wellbeing Board meet every two months on Friday at 10am
Care, Health and Wellbeing Overview and Scrutiny Committee meet monthly on Tuesdays at 1.30pm
Dates of future meetings, past minutes and further details are at:  http://democracy.gateshead.gov.uk/mgListCommittees.aspx?bcr=1
Joint Overview and Scrutiny Committee (OSC) for NENC “Integrated Care System” and North and Central “Integrated Care Partnership” (held at Gateshead Civic Centre)
This recently established Committee comprises Councillor representatives from seven Councils in the NE area. The Committee meet every two months on the third or fourth Monday at 1.30pm or 2pm
Dates of future meetings, past minutes and further details are at:  http://democracy.gateshead.gov.uk/mgListCommittees.aspx?bcr=1
Members of other local health campaign groups also have some presence at some of the NorthumberlandSouth Tyneside, Sunderland and Durham Council meetings – if you live in one of these areas and wish to offer help to one of the local campaign groups by tracking or attending the Council meetings in your area, again, please contact KONPNE and we will put you in touch with the relevant local group.
Thank you. 
Your help with this initiative would be greatly appreciated.


April and May 2022: Three questions to put to candidates in the forthcoming Council elections

polling station 2

Knock knock….
At this time of the year, we can guess who’s there….
Here’s three key questions to put to prospective Councillors – or, indeed, all Councillors even if they are not facing an election this year….and if there is no knock on the door, please click here for email addresses of current Councillors….


a) What will you do to encourage local NHS commissioning services to keep healthcare within the NHS? (Over the last decade, £96 billion has been paid to private companies for NHS services – privatisation puts profits before patients).
b) How will you work to increase democracy in local health structures?  (The Health and Care Bill reduces the contributions of councillors and local people on NHS decision-making bodies)
c) What are you doing to fight for fair pay for all NHS staff?  (The current pay offer of 3% is derisory and unacceptable. It is not surprising that there are 100,000 vacancies in the NHS – an average nurse in the UK has lost 20% of income over the past 10 years)
….and please let us know responses at konpnortheast@gmail.com – thank you!


And at any time of the year…. contact your local Councillor

As well as the above, it is important to keep in touch with individual members of the Council. It would take around 15 minutes to email your local Councillor, requesting that s/he is proactive in working against any further cuts to health and social services; please ask for a response to your email.
The names and email addresses of your ward councillors can be found on your Councils website; if you already know the names of your local councillors, then their email addresses are listed on our links page here. If possible, please copy in the Chair of the Councils Health and Wellbeing Board, and the Chair of the Councils Health Scrutiny Committee – they can be identified through your Councils website, and their email addresses can be found on our links page. For good measure, please also copy in your local Healthwatch group – on our links page.
This is democracy in action – please ensure that your voice is heard.


Parliamentary reports

>> Parliamentary report and guidance on the Effectiveness of Local Authority Overview and Scrutiny Committees   (December 2017)
>>> and the Governments response to the report on the Effectiveness of Local Authority Overview and Scrutiny Committees (March 2018) – this recommends actively encouraging public participation