Secret note reveals Bubb’s collusion with private healthcare interests

An astonishing expose by Social Investigations has revealed the role played last year by Stephen Bubb, chief executive of ACEVO, in pushing the interests of private healthcare providers. Bubb had chaired the Government’s ‘Choice and Competition’ sub group – as part of the so-called ‘listening exercise, set up after vociferous opposition to the plans for … Continue reading

Driven to market: youth work’s sheepish response?

There’s no sheepishness from In Defense of Youth Work! Join them for free events in London on 26 April and Manchester on 27 April to share experiences of how people are dealing with the marketisation of youth and community work and the wider voluntary sector.

Since the start of its campaign, In Defence of Youth … Continue reading

In Place of Austerity – putting the alternative argument

Here’s a good read that elegantly puts together different pieces of the jigsaw – the state of the economy, private sector influences on it, the undermining of public services and the welfare state, and how we might come together to resist the plans that the neo-liberals have for us.

In Place of Austerity’ is … Continue reading

5000 fewer managers, 4000 more doctors?

Learn to speak like a fully engaged, customer-facing choice moderniser…

Health Emergency have an entertaining and insightful guide to the language and spurious concepts used by those currently busying themselves with the dismantling of our welfare state. Have a giggle, get cross, pass it on:… Continue reading

Interviewing the real ‘big society’

Photo of Sarah LambSarah Lamb is a trustee of Adur Voluntary Action. She was one of the people who contributed to qualitative research in 2009 on The local state and voluntary action in West Sussex which showed the damage commissioning does. NCIA caught up with her to find out how things have been going over the last 18 … Continue reading

Funeral procession for the death of our public services

Manchester group The Art Corner are organising a funeral procession for the loss of our public services, to take place on the day of the royal wedding (29th April). They will have five coffins decorated with wreaths spelling out NHS, Education, Immigration, The Arts and Welfare. Participants will dress in black and march solemnly down … Continue reading

Government has no business running civil society

Government has no business running civil society. And voluntary agencies have no business running public services. NCIA’s Peter Bird talks with trade unionists

Cameron’s ‘big society’ is a front for cuts, privatisation, the exploitation of labour and good will, and undermining trade unions. Peter explains….. The other morning I heard the Chief Executive of a … Continue reading

Privatised public services – A sign of the future


This is what treatment is like in an NHS hospital today
This is what happened to my sister in a semi-privatised, squeezed by New Labour and Margaret Thatcher, we’re so proud of our standard of excellence we are applying for Foundation Hospital status hospital
This is what happened to my sister, … Continue reading

Learning from the Bad Guys

As a “lefty American” traversing the ground of the voluntary sector in the UK, I have often had a strange mixture of feelings:

  • a déjà vu experience of seeing very recognizable developments from the US in the 1990s being repeated here: at the behest of a governing party hewing to the perceived center (here the
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Voluntary action and privatisation

The article below appeared in the Winter 2005/6 issue (No. 34) of Green Socialist magazine (quarterly journal of the Alliance for Green Socialism). The author retains copyright but it may be reproduced and quoted as long as the author and Green Socialist magazine are given acknowledgement.

The Voluntary Sector and Privatisation

Privatisation may be primarily
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