Its latest gimmick to try and foist the unwanted ID card system on us is to suggest that military veterans could be issued with 'special' identity cards, so entitling them to 'priority NHS treatment, access to housing and discounts on public transport by using the cards'.
A Ministry of Defence spokeswoman is quoted as saying:
"We are actively investigating the options of an ID card for veterans that could guarantee identity thereby helping to secure access to services and discounts."
- note the careful wording; I'll get back to this a little later.
Minister for veterans Kevan Jones said the government needed "to make it happen" and speaking to the Independent newspaper is quoted as saying:
"We will provide veterans' ID cards so the person can say, 'I have served in the services,' and get priority access to treatment."
- this from the government, mark you, which closed military hospitals, forcing many seriously-injured soldiers to be in shared wards in NHS hospitals where many of the staff had no expertise whatsoever in dealing with patients with the kinds of physical and emotional injuries they had suffered! It makes me want to spit!
As for the 'careful wording' I referred to earlier, this statement by a Ministry of Defence spokeswoman seems to imply that the MoD will issue ID Cards; I believe they do issue military identity cards to serving personnel, but thiis seems to deliberately confuse the issue by conflating these with national identity cards, which will be issued under the auspices of the Home Office, who would presumably issue them to veterans as well.
As for entitlement to 'special treatment' (have these people no knowledge at all of history??!!), their military service entitles them to care tailored for their needs, not to be shunted off into NHS hospitals where neither the staff nor their fellow-patients may have much understanding of their needs. This attempt to bribe people to carry an ID card is unlikely to fool many people, particularly not those brave individuals, now veterans, who have fought this country's wars to preserve our freedoms, which this odious government seems so keen to curtail. Labour has over the years said it believes in 'equality'; now it wants to separate the population into two classes - and how is a doctor to make the decision, based on medical criteria, that one class of people (non-veterans) will henceforth be relegated to a government-approved second-tier status when seeking medical treatment? I thought the credo of the NHS was "free at the point of need".
I believe those who have served their country need to be treated with dignity and receive the treatment they require. They should not be used as a tool in this despicable way to further Labour's political agenda, by this 'on the cheap' quick-fix! How do they think military personnel/veterans will be viewed by those patients who are shoved further down the queue to make way? With some resentment inevitably. The Labour government may wish to try and dress this up as a 'privilege' for those who served their country; what it will in fact do is drive a wedge between segments of the population.
How stupid do Labour really think we are?