MPs reject Rashford' s call to increase free school meals over the vacations

MPs have rejected a Work motion calling for an extension of totally free school meals over the school vacations until Easter 2021.

It was rejected by 322 ballots to 261, a majority of 61.

Ministers have so far declined calls to extend the provision of totally free school meals in England over the half-term and Christmas breaks, despite arriving under pressure.

Manchester Usa and England footballer Marcus Rashford has been leading the campaign on the issue and was recently provided an MBE in recognition.

He wants them extended to all school holidays, and also provided to anyone who gets Universal Credit or even equivalent.

Before the vote, he cautioned MPs not to “turn a window blind eye” to vulnerable families plus said he would be “paying near attention” to the outcome.

Reacting to the motion’s defeat, this individual said in a statement on Tweets: “Put aside all the noise, the particular digs, the party politics plus let’s focus on the reality.

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“A significant number of children are going to sleep tonight not only hungry but sensation like they do not matter because of responses that have been made today.

“We must stop stigmatising, knowing and pointing fingers. Our sights are being clouded by political organization.

“This is not national politics, this is humanity. ”

Rashford promised to continue campaigning, incorporating: “For as long as they don’t have a tone of voice, they will have mine. ”

Labour’s shadow education admin, Kate Green, said the government acquired “badly let down more than one million kids and their families”.

She added: “No child is going hungry over the holidays, but the govt is blocking the action required to prevent this.

“We pay tribute to Marcus Rashford and others for shining a limelight on this incredibly important issue.

“This campaign is not as well as the government must reconsider. ”

Facing MPs in the Commons earlier, Boris Johnson resisted demands a change in approach.

“We support kids on lower incomes in school and we will continue to do this, ” he said during Leading Minister’s Questions.

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“But the most important thing is to place them in school and not tear off in to another national lockdown taking all of them out of school.

“We will continue to use the benefits system and everything the systems of income to back up children throughout the holidays as well. inch

And a Number ten spokesman said: “While schools always play an integral role in the community, decades for them to regularly provide food throughout school holidays. ”

A government spokesman said prior to the vote: “We have been giving significant support to families and kids, by providing free school meals whenever schools were partially closed, improving welfare support by £9. 3bn, and giving councils £63m regarding families facing financial difficulties.

“We also provided discount vouchers through the COVID Summer Food Account, in addition to the Holiday Activities and Foods Programme.

“Now how the vast majority of pupils are in school and over 99% associated with schools have been open every week given that term began, kitchens are able to offer healthy, nutritious meals to all kids, including those eligible for free college meals. ”