Birmingham: Edgbaston Labour Party welcomes the decision taken, this week, by Birmingham City Council to provide Free School Meal vouchers to over 6,000 children over the October half-term holiday. The issue of Free School Meals hit the national conscience last summer after the Conservative Government were shamefully forced into a U-turn by Manchester United, and England, striker Marcus Rashford, and politicians from all parties.
This week’s decision by Birmingham City Council will provide a vital lifeline to the most vulnerable families, with many being hit by the double-whammy of a hike in national insurance contributions and cuts to the £20 Universal Credit uplift. Jayne Francis, Labour Cllr. for Harborne and Cabinet member for Education, Skills, and Culture said:
“It’s great news that vouchers are being made available to schools and other settings so that those families who most need financial support can access the voucher this October half-term. We are determined to get this support to eligible families and to make sure that children can be properly fed.”
Cllr. Sharon Thompson for North Edgbaston and Cabinet member for Vulnerable Children and Families said:
“There is huge pressure on some families so this news will provide some reassurance. It is noticeable and worrying that the number of vouchers we are providing has increased as the effects of the pandemic continue to hit families incredibly hard, including the end of both the furlough scheme and the universal credit uplift.”‘