We publish below a letter from a new group – We Own It. Alex Sobel, Leeds NW Labour candidate, has signed up to this. We fully support its aims, and urge you all to sign up to the petitions.
We’re campaigning for a Public Service Users Bill to promote public ownership and give you powers over your services – from the railways to the Royal Mail. Join us at Labour Party Conference in Brighton next Tuesday 24th September. We’ll be asking Labour to commit to introducing the Bill in its manifesto. The event is open, everyone is invited and you don’t need a pass. We’d love to see you there. You can sign up on facebook here.
Stand up for a public East Coast railway
Over 20,000 people – including many of you – believe the East Coast line is better in public hands and have signed our petition to keep it public. Now we need to make sure those signatures have a big impact. On Friday 18th October, Caroline Lucas MP will present an Early Day Motion in Parliament calling for public ownership of the railways. We’ll hand in the East Coast petition to the Transport Secretary on the same day. Put the date in your diary! We’ll be in touch again with more details.
Ten reasons why the Royal Mail shouldn’t be privatised
Last week we were on the panel for the Guardian livechat ‘Should the Royal Mail be privatised?’ We think there are at least ten good reasons why it shouldn’t happen. If you agree, please sign up to the Save Our Royal Mail campaign, they need your help now more than ever.
58% want G4S and Serco banned from running services
Last week it was announced that Justice Secretary Chris Grayling is allowing G4S and Serco to bid to run probation services, even though both are being investigated for fraud. Do you think that’s OK? Our poll showed that 58% of people believe if these companies are guilty of fraud, they should have all contracts removed, and be banned from bidding to provide public services in the future. Check out the infographic.
Could you join our team?
We Own It is an exciting new organisation which is growing fast. We’re looking for volunteers and Board members. If you think you can help, please get in touch. It’d be great to hear from you. You can read more about us and our aims here.
We Own It commissioned a Survation survey.
It’s results are worth mulling over.
60% think local and national government should try running a public service first and only consider private ownership when found to have been run poorly, compared to…28% who think local and national government should contract out to private tender first and only consider public ownership when the service is badly run or too expensive. 80% think when a service is put out to tender, there should always be an in-house bid from the public sector to see if the service can be provided publicly at better value. 80% of Conservative voters agreed with this. Should the public be consulted before their services are privatised or outsourced? 79% – say yes, 13% – say no. 88% think the government should be required to end the contracts of private companies early, when they are found to be doing a poor job of running public services. This includes 90% of Conservative voters.
Alex Sobel says: ‘Publicly owned assets running profitably have been privatised by Tory-led Governments since the early 80s, selling us assets we already own and then hiking up prices and in some cases coming back for more public subsidy to enrich shareholders. Both Royal Mail and East Coast are returning profits to the Treasury and providing good service. Why would we want them privatised. Worse still, the Royal Mail privatisation is being rushed through by supposedly left leaning Lib Dem Vince Cable. We all need to take action to halt this.’