Headlines: June 8th, 2001

The ‘no barriers and no dogmas’ approach of the new Administration will have a massive impact on people at all levels in the public sector. In addition to the removal of barriers with the private and voluntary sectors there is also the removal of demarcation barriers between the professions within the same organizations. The doctor – nurse divide is an example. Elsewhere the setting up of one stop shops will involve ‘generalists’ giving increasingly detailed advice on a range of subjects previously reserved for the professional.Trade unions and professional bodies are already flexing muscles in an effort to preserve the status quo. Unison, Britain’s biggest trade union representing 1.5m public sector workers, is planning to call on delegates at its annual conference on June 17 to back its militant strategy of opposition to increasing the involvement of the private sector. Labour’s core trade union supporters have been infuriated by Tony Blair’s campaign pledges, in which he has made clear his intention to make much wider use of the private sector in hospitals and schools.