Today, Labour will today use an opposition day debate in Parliament to call on the Government to continue to directly fund the provision of free school meals, including the free school meal voucher scheme for eligible children over the summer holidays to ensure a holiday without hunger.
4365 children in the Norwich North and Norwich South parliamentary constituencies are eligible for free school meals. During the Covid-19 pandemic, a voucher scheme to provide food support to children at home was established instead which, after pressure, was extended to cover the May half-term. However, the Government has confirmed that it will not continue the voucher scheme or fund free school meals over the summer holidays. I’m calling for this decision to be reversed as part of Labour’s ‘Holidays without Hunger’ campaign.
In the long-term, we need to tackle the systemic and reversible causes of child poverty. Right now, we need the Government to step up and make sure vulnerable kids don’t go hungry this summer. Parents know how important a healthy diet is for children – and for children from struggling families, school meals are a lifeline.
Once school finishes for summer, these families’ kids get left behind, that’s why my party and I are calling on the Government to make sure no child goes hungry this summer. It is such a small step for the government to take to ease the financial pressure on households and ensure children can eat during the summer holidays.
They must take that step today.
You can show your support for the ‘Holidays without Hunger’ campaign here: http://labour.org.uk/holidayswithouthunger/