Guest essay by Eric Worrall
As the British National Health Service screams about the intense stress of dealing with rising Covid-19 hospital admissions, a strange story has emerged of an anti-lockdown activist being arrested for the crime of publishing a video of an empty NHS hospital.
Anti-lockdown activist who walked into hospital and filmed ’empty’ wards is handcuffed in her dressing gown and arrested by police who turned up at her door
- Debbie Hicks filmed herself wandering around Gloucester Hospital on Monday
- She was arrested by police on Tuesday for an alleged public order offence
- Hospital deny her claims that wards are empty and pandemic is a ‘massive scam’
- Ms Hicks was a Labour council candidate who said the 2017 Manchester terror attack was ‘wonderful timing for Theresa May’
- She was charged under coronavirus act at an anti-lockdown event last month
PUBLISHED: 01:24 AEDT, 1 January 2021 | UPDATED: 17:41 AEDT, 1 January 2021
An anti-lockdown protester and comrade of Jeremy Corbyn’s anti-vaxxer brother Piers has been arrested for filming inside a hospital and sharing footage on social media she claims shows the coronavirus pandemic is a ‘massive scam’.
Debbie Hicks wandered around Gloucester Royal Hospital on Monday saying it was ‘shut down’ and ‘dead’ and was arrested in her dressing gown by two officers who visited her home in Stroud 24 hours later.
In the eight-minute film, viewed by 158,000 people on Facebook, she says: ‘We’ve been put in Tier 3, for this? It’s a disgrace. I’ve seen less than 20 people. It’s completely dead in an empty hospital with wards shut down and the lights off.
‘Where are all the people dying and where is the mutant virus? I can’t see the evidence and neither can the public watching. We’ve been robbed of Christmas for this’.
Gloucester Royal Hospital has hit back and insisted the wards are ‘extremely busy’ and accused her of ‘intrusion’ and upsetting patients filmed waiting in A&E. One doctor told MailOnline she had filmed a deserted outpatient area on a bank holiday Monday, hence why it was empty.
She is an active supporter of Piers Corbyn and his ‘Freedom Rally’ movement, attending protests in London with him and posing for a selfie on the Tube using a party hat as a mask.
Mr Corbyn tweeted the video of her arrest today with the caption: ‘Fascism’.
Read more (includes video): https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9101999/Anti-lockdown-activist-46-arrested-secret-hospital-footage.html
Piers Corbyn, cited as the leader of the movement, is a high profile British climate skeptic, and a radical left wing activist who led squatters rights protests in the 1970s. Corbyn is the brother of far left former British national opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn.
Piers Corbyn appeared in climategate email 0837094033.txt, in which former CRU Director Phil Jones described Corbyn as Britain’s equivalent to Fred Singer, Pat Michaels, Bob Balling or Richard Lindzen.
Corbyn also now appears to also be a leader of Britain’s anti-lockdown movement.
I’m not disputing that there likely is substantial stress on the NHS. But what a strangely heavy handed response to the activities of a citizen journalist, even if she did break a few rules. Instead of aggravating tensions by responding with force, the Gloucester Royal Hospital could have attempted to de-escalate the situation, say by inviting Debbie Hicks in for an official visit, so she could get a more complete picture on what was happening.