The campaign group SaveWycombeHospital are inviting residents to join in with the next phase of a social media based picture protest which aims to unite the community in the goals of protecting Wycombe hospital and restoring lost services.
On Sunday 13th March 2016 local residents gathered for a photograph on the grounds of All Saints Church in High Wycombe’s town centre which launched the new phase of #HandsUpForAHandBack.
Photos of groups of people, with their hand in the ‘stop’ position, can be sent to SaveWycombeHospital via social media or email. Posters can be downloaded on the SaveWycombeHospital website.
Last year campaign co-ordinator Miss Ozma Hafiz requested a referendum on health. She said: ‘The hand works in two ways. We’re saying ‘stop’ (as in stop any further losses), and putting our hands up for a ‘hand back’ of lost services.
The hand campaign is about us zooming out and uniting the community in wanting to restore Wycombe hospital to a fully functioning one.
Our funding petition is designed to tackle a root cause of our problems, chronic under-funding. 99.9% of people I’ve spoken to when collecting paper signatures are more than happy to sign.‘
The petition entitled ‘Fair Funding for Buckinghamshire’ is due to be handed in to Downing Street by local MPs before the parliamentary recess. Locals are being requested to help at least one more person to sign the petition to give the signature numbers a final boost. The online total stands at 9183 signatures. The petition can be found at the following link: https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/fair-funding-for-buckinghamshire.
Reverend Hugh Ellis, Vicar of All Saints Church in High Wycombe, said: ‘My primary reason for supporting this campaign is because, by all accounts, the lack of an A&E at High Wycombe hits the more vulnerable and poorer folk of our town very hard.
There are accounts of some having been unable to get to Stoke Mandeville Hospital due to their personal circumstances. For some, the journey is experienced as such a hurdle as to have deterred them from accessing the help they need from Stoke Mandeville.‘
Ozma said: ‘The aims for the campaign are big, i.e. to restore our hospital to a fully functioning one, however by getting more people talking we can try to help with seemingly smaller issues. For example on hearing about a patient who was told by MIIU to go to Stoke Mandeville but went home because she couldn’t afford to get there, I emailed everyone who had signed our petition about the free bus services.
It was lovely to be joined by a mix of people, from some who campaigned before I woke up 8 years ago and some who have supported the campaign more recently.
Local ex-mayors were also in attendance and we had speeches including one from our Mayor on his theme this year of ‘One Community’. I feel I’ve learnt a lot from our photo event in terms of the work a big protest will take and we’ll be ready!
I would like to thank everyone who helped with our event and everyone who has supported us thus far. It’s not an easy fight but in many ways we’re getting stronger.
This is a key time for our hospital as decisions are currently being made about the hospital site.‘
Please share our petition with a least one more person, and do send in your photos to help us continue to raise our profile.
Further information on the SaveWycombeHospital campaign can be found at the following :
Email : [email protected]
Tweet : @HandBackOurHosp
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/groups/savewycombehospital/
Webpage : www.savewycombehospital.wordpress.com