The election for the EU is to be held on Thursday 23 May. At its Annual General Meeting in November 2018, the NHA voted 92% in favour of the UK staying in the EU. This reflects members’ views that the NHS will be even more severely disadvantaged if the UK leaves the EU. Doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers will be in very short supply if we leave.
At the election on Thursday, some of you will wish to vote for your traditional party. However, if your view about Brexit differs from that of your party, a number of you will wish to vote for a party whose views reflect your own on Brexit. In particular, you may wish to vote for a Remain party. The question is: which one?
The method of voting in the EU election is the d’Hondt system of semi-proportional representation. However, it favours large parties, and parties getting below 7% or 8% of the vote in a region will not get elected. NHA would not expect to reach that threshold, which is the main reason for our not standing any candidates in this election. If we were to stand, we would split the Remain vote and thus could leave the Remain side with fewer seats than they would deserve.
We therefore suggest voting in the following ways for regions in England, for Scotland and for Wales:
- For regions of England: vote Green or Liberal Democrat, depending on which of those two parties you prefer. Of these two parties, the Green Party's policies are closer to those of the NHAP, particularly in the fields of healthcare and the environment.
- For Scotland, vote Scottish Nationalist Party
- For Wales, vote Plaid, Green or or Lib Dem
For Northern Ireland, the method of voting is the fully-proportional Single Transferable Vote, so we suggest that you vote for the party of your choice in the context of the EU election. Nothing is gained by having to strategise. This suggested voting advice applies only to the coming EU election. NHA advice for voters for the next General Election in seats where the NHA does not field a candidate is likely to differ from the EU election suggestions.