Nurse of the year... on Brexit
TRANSCRIPT (captions in video):
(Joan Pons Laplana): Today is international nurses day, happy day to all the nurses around the world. If you know a nurse, just say thank you to them.
So this year is the 70th anniversary of the NHS and from the very beginning, migrants have made a massive contribution to the build up and what the NHS has become, the best health service in the world. From the beginning, the Windrush generation have managed to start and buildup the NHS and in the last 10 years, Europeans like myself have come and been attracted to come to work in the NHS to build a multi-cultural healthcare system that, as I say, is the envy of every country in the world. But, in the last few years, the NHS is suffering. We are at breaking point. We are underfunded and understaffed and Brexit could be the last nail in the coffin. A lot of you voted because you wanted the government to reinvest money in the NHS but, that is not happening. Brexit has made the situation worse because nurses like us, like me, European, no longer feel welcome in this country. The message that this government is sending to the rest of the world is that migrants are not welcome in this country. And that is having a massive impact. The number of my colleagues going back to their countries has sharply risen in the last 18 months. And that is a concern for me because currently we have over 100,000 vacancies : 40,000 of nurses, 10,000 of doctors. And now, we just shut this income of nurses from Europe. And that affects the quality of care that we can provide to you and your relatives. Did you know that every day up and down the country, 98% of the [NHS] shifts are understaffed? Not only one day, but every single day. For that reason, we cannot afford to turn our backs on this workforce that is coming from Europe because that will put in danger your lives and the lives of your relatives.
And that’s why I’m calling for the People’s Vote on the final Brexit deal.
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