Of course, it includes Swire and Parish
“In the House of Commons on Tuesday, MPs defeated a Labour motion, moved by Shadow Education Secretary Angela Rayner, to block a planned government move that will take a free, hot school meal from the mouths of around one million children from low-income families.
Tory MPs have attempted to deflect blame for their callousness by selectively quoting a Channel 4 Fact Check article – which said it could not fault the Labour Party’s calculations – in order to claim they are actually giving free meals to an additional 50,000 children and not taking it away from the million.
But that pathetic deflection was laid to rest in the very first exchange of the debate around Labour’s motion:
Chris Philp (Croydon South) (Con)
Does the hon. Lady agree with Channel 4’s FactCheck, which says:
“This is not a case of the government taking free school meals from a million children”.
These are children who are not currently receiving free school meals, and in fact the Government’s proposals would see 50,000 extra children receive free school meals. Perhaps the hon. Lady could stop giving inaccurate information to the House.
The hon. Gentleman should know that his Government have introduced transitional arrangements, and we are clear that under the transitional arrangements, those 1 million children would be entitled to free school meals. With the regulations, the Government are pulling the rug from under those hard-working families.
In my own boroughs of Oldham and Tameside, a total of 8,700 children growing up in poverty are set to miss out. In the Secretary of State’s own area, the total is 6,500. So much for the light at the end of the tunnel that the Chancellor mentioned over the weekend on “The Andrew Marr Show”!
The UK has one of the worst rates of child malnutrition and ‘food insecurity’ among rich nations – with one in five UK children suffering food insecurity.
In spite of this – and the callousness of depriving hungry schoolchildren of food, with the consequent impact on their health and education – the government defeated the motion.
Not a single Tory MP rebelled – and of the ten DUP MPs, ‘incentivised‘ by a Theresa May pledge to maintain the free school meals for Northern Irish children – only one declined to vote away the provision for children in Britain.
The full roll-call of shame of MPs who voted down Labour’s attempt to protect poor children from hunger is below [includes Swire and Parish]”