The public are in favour of ending the privatisation of key public services
Sky-rocketing energy bills. Ever-lengthening NHS waiting lists. Rail and postal workers forced to go on strike. Water companies pumping raw sewage into rivers. Britain’s public services are in crisis.
A new opinion poll suggests the public have a preferred solution – public ownership.
The pollster Survation has surveyed a represented sample of 4,300 people in the UK, and found that the overwhelming majority think privatisation of key public services should end, and that they should instead be brought into public ownership.
The poll found:
- 78% think the NHS should be run in the public sector
- 69% think water should be run in the public sector
- 68% think the Royal Mail should be run in the public sector
- 67% think the railway should be run in the public sector
- 66% think energy should be run in the public sector
- 65% think buses should be run in the public sector
Survation found that support for public ownership crosses party lines. A majority of voters for the Tories, Labour, Lib Dems, SNP and other parties were found to back public ownership of all these sectors.
The polling was commissioned by anti-privatisation group We Own It. In response to the findings, the group’s director Cat Hobbs said, “Privatisation has failed for nearly 40 years. Politicians can’t ignore the truth any longer – these monopolies are a cash cow for shareholders around the world and we need to take them back. We need energy companies that don’t rip us off, public transport that works for passengers, water companies that don’t pour sewage into our rivers.”
She added, “We call on the government to bring energy, water, public transport and the Royal Mail into public ownership, and to reinstate our NHS as a fully public service. Labour and all opposition parties must commit to public ownership. The clue’s in the name – public services are supposed to work for us, the public.”
We Own It is currently running a campaign that is calling on the Westminster government to turn Bulb Energy into a publicly owned supply company instead of paying Octopus Energy £1 billion to take over the failed private company.
Chris Jarvis is head of strategy and development at Left Foot Forward
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