Rashford continues to put pressure on government over free school meals

Marcus Rashford Pic: Дмитрий Голубович

Marcus Rashford’s plea to extend the government’s free school meal voucher scheme throughout the summer holidays will be discussed in Parliament this afternoon.

The Manchester United footballer’s open letter to MPs calling for a U-turn on the plan to halt the scheme at the end of this term was rejected by the government yesterday.

But Rashford, who emotionally recalled his childhood in Wythenshawe is his letter , said he was not giving up and is putting more pressure on MPs today as they meet to discuss the future of the scheme.

Rashford’s letter won widespread support and praise from the public, politicians and fellow sports stars and in a series of tweets today he said: “When you head to the fridge to grab the milk, stop and recognise that parents of at least 200,000 children across the country this morning are waking up to empty shelving, recognise children around the country are this morning innocently questioning ‘why?’

“Nine out of 30 children in any given classroom are today asking ‘why?’ Why does our future not matter?”

Opposition MPs have tabled a motion calling for a U-turn on the issue and there is growing unease among some Tory back bench MPs about the government’s refusal to reverse the decision.

The government says it is  running a holiday activities and food programme to benefit thousands of  disadvantaged children this summer and is supplying £63 million to local councils in England to allow for targeted support to assist those who are struggling to afford food and other essentials due to covid-19.

But Rashford is calling for more pressure on the government, with one Tory backbencher predicting an eventual U-turn, according to the BBC.



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