Residents’ protest over NHS trade deal

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Concerned Matlock residents erected mock ‘for sale’ signs outside their homes this week in protest against a trade deal which they believe threatens the future of the NHS.

Protestors called on Derbyshire Dales MP Patrick McLoughlin to help “protect the NHS from irreversible privatisation” of an EU trade deal called the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).

They used to protest on Wednesday, September 9, to ask Mr McLoughlin to use his position in the cabinet to put pressure on Prime Minister David Cameron.

TTIP is a series of trade negotiations being carried out – mostly in secret – between the EU and US. TTIP is about reducing the regulatory barriers to trade for big business.

One of the main aims of TTIP is to open up Europe’s public health, education and water services to US companies. And protestors across the country fear this will mean privatisation of the NHS.

Resident Wendy Cooper said: “Hundreds of residents are raising signs calling for the NHS to be protected from a trade deal which means the irreversible privatisation of our health service.

“There is massive opposition in Matlock and voters are demanding action to get the NHS out of TTIP. Patrick McLoughlin must use his position to put pressure on David Cameron to act. The Conservative government does not have a mandate to allow the sell-off of the NHS to become permanent.”

Matlock is the latest constituency to join the mass movement, which has seen over 100,000 collective actions by people.

Residents also gathered at the grassy area on Lynhomes Rise, in Matlock, for the protest.