Newsletter to SHA members in Wales: No. 6 August 2020
- Welsh Labour member on the National Executive Committee (NEC)
Thank you to all members who took part in the ballot to ascertain whether SHA Cymru Wales should offer a supporting nomination to one of the two candidates seeking our support. The turnout was about 40% and members voted by a considerable margin to support Mick Antoniw. Both candidates and Labour Party officers were informed of the result soon after the close of the ballot. It is a testimony to the standing of SHA Cymru Wales within the Welsh Labour movement that both candidates judged our support to be a valuable addition to their campaign.
- SHA Cymru Wales: AGM October 15th
The AGM for SHA Cymru Wales has already been agreed for the evening of October 15th 2020 and the guest speaker will be Rebecca Evans MS who will provide an insight into the political context that might shape how a post Covid care system will look in Wales. By October there might be more clarity about factors such as: i) the Brexit settlement, ii) any emerging trade deals that impact on the Welsh NHS, iii) the state of the U.K. economy, iv) any adverse legislative changes to the current competencies devolved to the Senedd.
In addition to our guest speaker the AGM will: receive reports from officers; elect the Chair, Secretary and Treasurer for the coming year, elect delegates (3) to the governing body of the Association; elect the delegate to Wales Labour Conference. The current state of the U.K. organization will also figure (See below). A venue is yet to be agreed although if we are able to gather together it will probably be either in Swansea or Cardiff. If a physical event is held, it is intended to supplement this using zoom or similar to enable input from members (and guests) unable to attend in person. If current restrictions are still in force the meeting will proceed using zoom.
- Working groups
The following working groups have been established to examine different topics suggested by members. If members wish to join one or more groups, please let the secretary or the group convener know.
- a) Progress with, and implications of, the Safe Staffing Levels Act. It will be convened by Linda Lewis and members interested in this topic should contact Linda (email@example.com). Terms of reference are being drafted.
- b) Progress with tackling Health Inequalities in Wales with special reference to BAME communities. The experience of members from BAME backgrounds and from the wider Labour movement in Wales will be sought. The convener(s)of this group is to be determined and offers of assistance from members interested in this topic would be welcomed.
- c) Assessing the performance management regime in NHS Wales looking at case studies relating to the special measures regime and the management of waiting lists in selected specialties. The convener of this group will be Tony Beddow.
- d) In addition to the above, officers will monitor progress with the policy making process in Wales and the use made of SHA Cymru Stage Two policy submission.
- Actions taken by UK officers
Welsh members are by now aware of events at the UK level that resulted in the Central Council, elected over six months ago being replaced by one created by the Chair and secretary. The explanation offered for their action is not accepted by Welsh officers. Nearly sixty members signed a constitutionally sound request for a Special General Meeting (SGM) to be called urgently to examine the actions of the two officers. The call was ignored – improperly in the view of Welsh Officers. Instead, the improper Central Council was called (using zoom) and conducted business it was not competent to do. It is understood that the Treasurer has now “frozen” the bank accounts of the Association pending a properly convened SGM. Welsh Members will have the opportunity to take stock of these events at one of two zoom meetings on 12th and 17th of August (papers to follow).
- Members experiences of Covid
U.K. officers have asked for the experiences of Welsh members in relation to the Covid pandemic to be shared with them. This would inform a UK wide briefing process to inform the Westminster shadow health team about any members experiences as NHS or caring staff, or patients. Identifying differences in practice and policy between the four parts of the United Kingdom is an expected outcome from examining such experiences. Please send any contributions to Tony Beddow (firstname.lastname@example.org) who will forward to appropriate Uk officers.