As long ago as April 2013, I was sounding off about QASA. I know that quoting yourself is a sure sign of vanity but I will
” My fear is that the profession I have loved for over 47 years may rush headlong into a protracted suicide, destroying many practices in the process. Don’t misunderstand me. Militancy undoubtedly has helped to create a fighting spirit after years in which we have been betrayed by successive governments. But the question is whether we are shooting ourselves in the foot by promising a non-cooperation which ultimately carries such a high risk.
My circuit is the first in line. Forced to choose between the future of their profession and putting bread on the table, you cannot blame the young or indeed anyone for choosing the latter. …….Meanwhile I support every possible effort to Improve this sick mouse of a scheme before it comes into place, Including going for judicial review.”
Well I have continued to argue for our own scheme so that we can be immune to the taunt that in a uniquely arrogant way we refuse to accept the need for any system of continuous assessment. But still no scheme, ideally Inn/ Circuit based, is on the table. And time is drawing on. March 7th to be precise for my circuit.
So what do we do if we want to be able to practise? Several answers spring to mind.
Nothing till the result of the hearing and Appeal
Or mass refusal
Or reluctant angry acceptance.
I have no intention of dodging the question if and when the moment comes. Although many want a double lock – fighting with increasing interference AND refusing to sign up, the bottom line is that these are separate decisions and more importantly, individual ones. No one has the right to tell another individual practitioner what he or she should do about QASA. If asked at the moment to vote on the issue prior to March 7th, I would probably abstain. But that is really because of the legal challenge.
Remember that The Lord Chancellor has indicated that he is not concerned about the issue of QASA.
Are we really going to vote for mass red cards, rather than continue to fight the cuts?
Cool heads you may think are needed.
Nigel Pascoe QC