March For Mental Health


After the sudden closure of Bootham Park hospital and therefore cuts to vital mental health services in York, Mental Health Action York (MHAY) was formed. Working side by side with the People’s Assembly we organised a successful march and rally on May the 14th to increase awareness and express public support for the reinstatement of mental health services which were so suddenly and cruelly taken.

The March got a wide press coverage including ITV Calendar and BBC look north. We had some great speakers including Len McCluskey and York Central MP Rachel Maskell who said “It is so important that we are standing up for not just the one in four people who experience mental health challenges, but the one in one who could be affected by them. It’s vital that we put this marker down today that we need quality mental health facilities in York.” Also Bob Adams, a founder member of MHAY and a retired consultant psychiatrist spoke out and said “York has been particularly hit with the closure of Bootham Park Hospital when we lost all of our adult beds at just five days’ notice. We want to raise attention to this and make sure that the residents of York have a say in how services are developed in the future. In my time I have seen the peak of mental health services and now the decline, which is very bad.”

As People’s Assembly we wanted to say thank you to everyone who made this possible and let’s keep up the good fight.

Eyewitness Calais – Report-back from the Refugee Jungle at Calais

When the group of York University social work students planning to take supplies to the  refugee ‘jungle’ in Calais came to a York People’s Assembly meeting, as we’d offered our support, we asked them to report back on their experience following the visit at the end of September. Continue reading

Day School discusses alternatives to war rhetoric

All the speakers joined the final panel

All the speakers joined the final panel

York Against the War’s day school on World War 1 and its lessons for today drew together a mix of academic, cultural and political voices to consider how we avoid future catastrophic global warfare. The importance of challenging racism and building movements for peace were both highlighted to the audience of over a hundred. Continue reading

Talking together about TTIP in York

TTIPPeople from many different local organisations, including York People’s Assembly, came together for a recent 38 Degrees day of action. The aim was to get people talking about TTIP – the trade deal threatening to kill off the NHS and all other public services. There was significant interest from passers by, with a good number signing the petition to request Vince Cable fix or scrap the Transatlantic Trade Investment Partnership (TTIP). The action was also covered by the York Press. (Thanks to Defend Our NHS York for parts of this report).

Fat Cats Advise York Visitors and Residents Against US Trade Deal

Fat cats and puppets gather against TTIP

Fat cats and puppets gather against TTIP

Several dozen people from a variety of campaigns around York gathered in King’s Square York from 12 midday to warn people against a major trade deal being negotiated between the United States and the EU, which protesters say threatens democracy, the environment, and public services including the NHS. The York protest, featuring people dressed as ‘fat cats’ with puppets, was one of almost 20 demonstrations planned across the UK on 12 July. Continue reading