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Hospital posturing is pure political opportunism

The agenda for RCT Council meeting on Wednesday 10th April includes a motion from Labour Councillors that

"This Council seeks to express its concerns at the practical implications, changes to maternity services in Cwm Taf are creating for residents in Rhondda Cynon Taf" and "calls upon the Local Health Board to review the newly implemented arrangements in Cwm Taf, to reflect upon the difficulties this set-up is causing residents."

Worthy sentiments indeed and ones which RCT Lib Dems fully appreciate. The decision to remove maternity and paediatric services amongst others from the Royal Glamorgan is one which should never have been taken.

However, the decision was confirmed back in 2014 after several years of proposals and consultations. Councillor Mike Powell and I worked with a group of staff to fight the moves, even taking the battle to court to try and get a judicial review. Apart from a few of them waving banners and getting petition signatures which they could then use for their own political purposes the Labour party were nowhere to be seen.

The problems were all foreseen and outlined in great detail - including plans for new housing estates which is a factor mentioned in the motion. Surely they knew that at the time, being the authority granting planning permission. Why then didn't they make more fuss when it mattered - when the decision was being taken? Being taken by their own Labour colleagues at the Assembly.

These plans were passed five years ago and have already been implemented, there is no chance of it being revoked now just because a few Labour Councillors have woken up to the fact that it is happening. They should have done that years ago. This really does smack of pure political opportunism.

Karen Roberts

Campaign Manager RCT Welsh Liberal Democrats