“Don’t let health chiefs think we don’t care about Huddersfield’s A&E.”
That’s the message from #HandsOffHRI campaigners who are urging residents to attend the final public meeting on a plan which could close Huddersfield Royal Infirmary’s emergency department.
Hundreds of people were locked out of a previous meeting at John Smith’s Stadium when the venue was overwhelmed with protestors.
Local NHS bosses decided to make the third meeting a ticket-only event after the 535-capacity venue failed to accommodate the numbers attending on April 18.
But with five days to go before the meeting – and with just a day left to obtain a ticket – over 200 tickets are still available.
It is believed people applying for tickets were put off by the online process which asks applicants to write a question for the panel of health bosses who will be leading the meeting.
Campaigners fear a half-full venue could mislead health chiefs in believing that the people of Huddersfield don’t care about their controversial Right Care Right Time Right Place proposal.
WATCH a recap of the John Smith's meeting below
That’s why members of #HandsOffHRI are urging residents to make a ‘final push’ to show their feelings towards those behind the plan.
Nat Ratcliffe, #HandsOffHRI secretary, said: “The third and final meeting is just as important if not more so than the meetings that have gone before. We as a campaign need to make a stand.
“We want to show that this one proposal is just not acceptable. Whether you are inside the meeting or outside with the rally, a presence there is of fundamental importance. Actions can often speak louder than words.
“The public again have been stifled from asking questions. It yet another way that the CCG are showing that they are not listening to us.
“Come down to the stadium and shout as loud as you can. Let’s make our voice heard, loud and proud. Get your friends, family and kids down to the stadium and show them we will not back down.”
Plans for emergency care explained below
Karl Deitch, #HandsOffHRI president, said: “If you feel strongly about Huddersfield Royal Infirmary and the A&E you need to come.
Karl added: “You don’t have to ask a question. You can just put ‘no question’ in the box and get a ticket.
“If you don’t want to go in you can stand outside and support us.
“We need to show them that Huddersfield won’t take this lying down.”
The third public meeting on Right Care Right Time Right Place takes place at John Smith’s Stadium, on June 6 (6.30pm).
To book a ticket visit: www.rightcaretimeplace.co.uk/public-meeting or call: 01484 464212.
Under the Right Care Right Time Right Place (RCRTRP) proposals, Huddersfield Royal Infirmary will lose its A&E department while emergency care will be centralised in Halifax.