CLAIMS Save the Alex campaigners are damaging the morale of staff working within the county’s hospitals have been branded ‘lazy and inaccurate’.
Rev David Southall, hospital chaplain at the Worcestershire Royal, has criticised the way the campaign is being run claiming it was having a damaging effect on staff and patients and he had been contacted by several staff members concerned about it.
“They are chipping away at morale in what are challenging times.” he told a rival newspaper.
He has also questioned the motives behind the campaign in a regular newspaper column in which he challenged campaigners, amongst other things, to declare what their agenda was, how they were funded and how they responded to claims their actions were damaging morale.
In response campaigners have released a detailed rebuttal of Rev Southall’s claims on the Save the Alex website. They point out they are backed by more than 55,000 people who signed the STA petition opposing cuts to A&E and maternity services at the Alexandra Hospital and they have support from a wide range of political parties.
They have also released the campaign’s accounts on their website demonstrating the money they have received has come through donations and street collections on top of support in-kind offered through measures such as free printing.
Neal Stote, chairman of the campaign, said they were in contact with staff on a regular basis who frequently expressed their support for what they were doing.
“There are many other things affecting staff morale which need to be resolved such as frustrations with e-rostering, short staffing, claims of bullying, the way some Redditch staff feel looked down on by their Worcester colleagues, uncertainty about the Trust’s financial position etc. To just blame Save the Alex is lazy and inaccurate.” he said.
“That said I would agree there needs to be more focus on the positive things the NHS does in general. But in terms of STA, if Rev Southall, or anyone else, wants to scrutinise what we do and why then we’re not hiding anywhere, come and have a conversation with us.”
Visit www.savethealex.co.uk for the full response.
Rev David Southall has attacked the Save the Alex campaign (s).