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Lib Dems call on Devon to provide Free School Meals in holidays

October 23, 2020 6:19 PM
Originally published by South Hams Liberal Democrats

DCC signDevon County Council should reverse its 'mean minded' refusal to provide free school meals during the holidays, say Devon's Liberal Democrats.

"The impact of the lockdown and Covid19 on many families across the County is not of their making and money is increasingly tight, especially for those affected by reduced hours, lost jobs, or furlough arrangements," said Liberal Democrat opposition leader Cllr Alan Connett.

"At a time when Marcus Rushford can be honoured by the Queen for his campaign to tackle hunger in children and more councils across the country are now saying they will help, the best Devon can do is 'signpost' to foodbanks, pubs and cafes providing free meals."

Connet said the issue of holiday hunger was highlighted at County Hall back in the summer of 2018, but since then nothing had changed.

"The Conservatives who run Devon County Council opted then to take no action - except put a link on the county website to highlight where families might get help. That link doesn't work today. It says the page is not found.

"So even with a pandemic and all the problems we know families in Devon are facing - they haven't even kept the website up to date."

Cllr Connett added: "Yet again, Devon's Conservatives have shown they don't understand the pressures families are facing because of Covid19 and the long-lasting effects of lockdown. No child should go hungry in Devon, this is another holiday when that is likely to happen in Devon. It's mean minded. "