Tory health secretary Sajid Javid confirmed this week that the government is to begin administering booster vaccines in the autumn.
This is despite scientists, including the head of the Oxford Vaccine Group that developed the AstraZeneca jab, stating there is no evidence a booster programme is needed.
Again, contrary to the science, the government has bulldozed ahead and ordered 35 million doses for its “booster programme”.
The order comes on top of the 500 million vaccines Britain already has, which is enough for two jabs for four times the adult population.
For every 100 people in Europe, 84 people have received one dose. Compare this to the 59 per 100 in South America, 54 in Asia and in Africa fewer than five doses per 100.
Currently only 1.1 percent of people living in low income countries have one dose of a vaccine. The Tories are hoarding supplies while claiming to be global philanthropists by sending vaccines to the poorest countries.
Last month, they committed to sending 30 million doses overseas by the end of the year. However, the World Health Organisation has stated that vaccinating the world will take 11 billion doses.
A meagre 30 million is a drop in the ocean. The Tories are doing what they do best—attempting to fool the public into believing that they care about anything other than protecting their system.
The Tories claim to care about creating a “global Britain”. But they have decided to not immediately donate more vaccines to those in need globally.
Why has Britain not donated more vaccines to the world’s vulnerable? Simple.
Unfortunately the Tories are only interested in protecting wealth. As Boris Johnson said himself, Britain’s vaccine success is thanks to greed and capitalism.
If those in need are not financially beneficial to the Tories, they will be left to fight this global battle against Covid themselves.
Fight for health and social care
Dr Kambiz Boomla’s article on the new Health and Care Bill (Socialist Worker, 13 July) shows the need to resist the Tories’ offensive on health and social care.
Although the bill is still making its way through parliament, restructuring of the delivery of health and care services has been taking place since 2015.
These changes are based on a growing view among some politicians and hospital managers that there needs to be a more integrated model of health and social care.
More collaborative working may, on the surface, appear to be common sense. However, it’s a trap.
It will end up with dismantling hard fought for current levels of pay and conditions of services.
The bosses will attempt to change contracts to increase the flexibility and “skill mix”. This means social care, health and housing workers taking on each other’s current roles.
As workers become more hybrid, it will become easier to privatise the services.
Tower Hamlets council workers in east London have shown us how to fight.
We must learn from them and remember the bill will undermine what’s left of public services.
Integrated care cannot solve the problems created by Tory austerity. Paying health care workers a decent wage and increased funding is a start.
Stop scapegoating of students for Covid chaos
Ministers recently suggested making double vaccinations against Covid-19 mandatory for students to attend lectures and even to stay in university halls.
They say this is to increase vaccine uptake amongst younger people.
But it is unfair for students who for whatever reason cannot be vaccinated, and those who fear it. We need persuasion, not coercion.
Plus, it puts the onus on individuals to keep others safe, when this is what the government should have been doing.
Getting the vaccine should not be the only tool we have against Covid-19.
Not getting it should not be a barrier to education.
Although these plans are now probably being dropped, they are indicative of how the pandemic has been dealt with by the Tories.
That’s especially true when considering the scapegoating of young people by the government to cover its failings.
Build a struggle to protect the NHS
While leafleting at the local hospital people turned to pass us, until they saw the headline of Socialist Worker.
It called for a strike to beat the Tories’ pay insult.
Then, people stopped to talk.
Some reported that they were very angry “to put it mildly”.
But they also expressed doubt as to whether this will translate into a vote for action “as we’ve been here before and nothing happened”.
Management-type figures made comments like, “They have no pay rise in social services so they should be grateful for any rise they get”.
Dividing workers against each other is always the bosses’ first instinct.
Pretending there is no money for pay rises is another.
We have to counter this with meetings and discussions, as the Tories and their media will be shouting loudly.
Fighting Tory attacks on workers is the best way to resist the cuts to patient care that have progressed for decades.
Union leaders have long been hell bent on calling off action or minimising it.
If we don’t fight, patient care will worsen, more staff will leave and the vultures will land.
Tory assault on animals
The Tories’ decision to allow animal testing for cosmetics is barbaric.
They claim the move is to align with a board of appeal decision by the European Chemicals Agency that says certain ingredients must be tested before human use.
This is a lie.
The Tories see animals as raw ingredients for the profit machine and bloodsports fun.
They don’t want that machine choked by sentimentality.
With polls suggesting 84 percent of us won’t buy these cosmetics, I can only hope their disregard for life assists their own demise.
Don’t engage the fascists
Over the last five years YouTube has been an increasing platform for the radicalisation of young people.
It was dominated by the far right, but the left has been growing in retaliation.
Now a new undercurrent of streamers are self‑proclaimed anarchists who discuss current events from the comfort of their computers.
A culture of “debate me bro” has been created where these streamers proclaim to be willing to debate anyone, including some well known fascist figures.
Inadvertently, this builds far right movements by offering a platform to usually de-platformed fascist figures.
Starmer’s for the bosses
When you represent the businesses and the bosses rather than the workforce, you are no longer the Labour Party.
Relationship between Labour and businesses? What about the relationship between Labour and the people who do the work?