Since Monday, over 7,500 people have signed an online petition calling for Northern Ireland’s health minister, Edwin Poots MLA to resign or be removed from his post as a result of his funding of appeals against decisions of the High Court. The petition can be found on Avaaz.org’s site here.
The petition reads:
“We call on the Northern Ireland Assembly to seek the resignation of Edwin Poots, or for his removal from his post as Health Minister and thus bring to an end his disgraceful waste of public money in pursuit of a personal ”
Why is this important?
Edwin Poots is squandering public money in the pursuit of a personal agenda against unmarried and same sex couples, diverting essential funding from vital and vastly over-stretched NHS services which benefit the entire population. Mr Poots should resign or be removed from his post as Health Minister to end this wanton action.
While public health and social care services struggle to make ends meet, Mr Poots has spent, to date, £17,000 in an effort to ensure unmarried and same sex couples are denied the opportunity to adopt children in turn, denying children the best opportunity to a loving and stable family environment.
Justifying his action with 7 year old data which, by his own department’s admission, is flawed in the very way in which it was obtained, he intends to continue this campaign at the High Court, with the approximate final cost being £40,000.
Mr Poots has also wasted £37,000 in ensuring gay men who wish to donate blood are denied from doing so. This is at complete odds with blood donation advice in every other part of the UK and demonstrates utter incompetence and complete disregard for the public purse and more importantly, the NHS he has stewardship over.
Already signed? Want to make your voice heard?
When you have signed the petition there is another way to make sure your voice is heard in the democratic process – make sure that you are registered to vote.
The Electoral Office of Northern Ireland is conducting its General Canvass at the moment with registration day being 27 September 2013. By now, all residents of Northern Ireland should have received a registration form. If you have not, please go to the Electoral Office’s website to register there.
Speaking at the launch of the canvass Graham Shields, the Chief Electoral Officer, said;
‘Being on the Electoral Register safeguards your democratic right to vote and ensures that you have your say in elections. Even if you don’t intend to exercise your right to vote, it still remains a legal obligation to register. Registering to vote is easy and I would ask everyone to take just a few minutes to complete the registration form and return it to us by the 27 September deadline.’