In recent weeks those who want us to leave Europe – the Tory headbangers, UKIP and friends – have been claiming that the NHS will get more money if we leave the EU.
That’s utter nonsense.
These are often the same politicians whose government has strangled the NHS of funds over the past six years, and caused its current recruitment and retention crisis.
There’s no reason to believe the same hostile conditions wouldn’t continue under Brexit. Indeed the political and economic turmoil that would result from the UK going it alone would hit jobs, living standards and public services hard, and likely mean less money for services like the NHS, not more.
That’s what public servants, and those who rely on the public services they provide, fear about Brexit – extra pressure to our already overstretched NHS, schools, local councils and police.
Losing £36bn in tax receipts – as the Treasury has estimated would happen post-Brexit – could push the public sector right over the edge, and unleash a wave of damaging privatisation – something the NHS is especially at risk from.
Although many of those politicians who support leaving the EU would be happy with that.
The prospect of private firms running most, if not all, our public services would not be such a rosy outcome for patients, pupils and the public generally.
And that’s just one reason why UNISON is campaigning for the UK to remain in the EU.
Dave Prentis is the general secretary of Unison, the public service union. To find out more about their campaign for the UK to remain inside the European Union check out their website.
20th May 2016