In recognition that the toxic trade deal CETA is due to be agreed on 18 October and ratified on 27 October, a protest was mounted by anti-CETA activists in London at South End Green near the Royal Free Hospital. Supported by Global Justice Now, the action started at 11.00am in Hampstead as activists worked to alert members of the public to the fact that despite the UK’s Brexit vote, the NHS and public services remain very much under threat from both TTIP and CETA.
A huge banner displaying the word ‘Democracy’ was attached to railings by South End Green, while a stall with leaflets and a petition was sited on the pavement opposite, close to shoppers and passers by.
A campaigner informed members of the public via a megaphone of the impacts of CETA on our public services, food safety and standards, workers rights and on the environment, and read a roll-call of outrageous corporate arbitration cases that have stifled the implementation of democratic rights and prevented regulation in the public interest by governments in many parts of the world. Leaflets were handed out and a large number of postcards were filled in by members of the public, ready to send to the London MEPs to urge them to vote down this toxic deal. Patients, visitors and staff at the Royal Free Hospital were also handed leaflets and alerted to this major threat to the NHS.
A group of protesters later made their way to Westminster to drop a banner off the bridge and give out more leaflets, to raise awareness of the threat that CETA poses to our democracy.
This action forms part of the International Autumn of Action on CETA, with many protests taking place over the next few weeks in a European and Canadian effort to halt this corporate coup.