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Greek solidarity

The right to healthcare

Sunday 15 March 2015, by Penelope Duggan

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The austerity programmes in Greece have had a particularly sharp effect on the health service with many health centres closed, mass lay-offs of health workers and drastic cuts in public health care, thus excluding 35% of the population from this fundamental right.

Faced with this humanitarian crisis, and thanks to the active participation of the population, of users and voluntary professionals, an original form of fight back has emerged through the development of self-managed dispensaries in local areas. This alternative organisation, an instrument of struggle against the regressive policies being implemented, has had an echo in Europe. International solidarity has been organised to ensure the survival of these dispensaries.

During the last two years in France, the “Solidarité France-Grèce” collective has supported their activities financially and materially, raising 20 00 euros, sending medical equipment including a whole dental cabinet, and some medication. It has also sought to make known the activities of the dispensaries through organising public meetings with volunteers from the dispensaries.

It is now organising a delegation to Greece for the month of May. The collective brings together trade-unionists from the health sector, left political organisations and campaigns such as Attac and in defence of the health service in France. The delegation will represent all these forces and will visit dispensaries and hospitals, meet health workers trade-unionists and representatives of the health and social security ministries. In preparation for the sending of the delegation the Collective is launching an appeal for funds to take to the dispensaries.

But the goal is broader, creating new links, understanding the needs and discussing with Greek partners is complementary to the work with the dispensaries which is a form of social mobilisation in solidarity and with respect of the democratic choice of the Greek people.

Information on the collectif http://solidaritefrancogrecque.word...