Search

Majority of Norfolk and Waveney MPs vote against free school meals extension

PUBLISHED: 11:25 22 October 2020 | UPDATED: 11:34 22 October 2020

A vote was held on a motion to extend free school meals over school holidays until Easter 2021. Picture: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

A vote was held on a motion to extend free school meals over school holidays until Easter 2021. Picture: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

The majority of Norfolk’s MPs have voted against a motion to extend free school meals until next Easter.

Clockwise from top left, James Wild MP, Brandon Lewis MP, Duncan Baker MP and Chloe Smith MP. Picture: ArchantClockwise from top left, James Wild MP, Brandon Lewis MP, Duncan Baker MP and Chloe Smith MP. Picture: Archant

A vote was held on Wednesday evening following a motion by the Labour Party.

The motion was lost by 322 votes to 261 - a majority of 61.

In Norfolk and Waveney, Conservative MPs Peter Aldous, Richard Bacon, Duncan Baker, Therese Coffey, George Freeman, Brandon Lewis, Jerome Mayhew, Chloe Smith, and James Wild voted against the motion.

South West Norfolk Tory MP Elizabeth Truss was missing from the voting list, while Norwich South Labour MP Clive Lewis’ vote in favour of the motion was cast in proxy by fellow Labour MP Lloyd Russell-Moyle.

File photo dated 24-06-2020 of Manchester United's Marcus Rashford. PA Photo. Issue date: Wednesday October 21, 2020. Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford warned MPs not to “turn a blind eye” to vulnerable families as the Commons prepared to vote on a Labour call to extend free school meals over the holidays. See PA story SOCCER Rashford. Photo credit should read Martin Rickett/PA WireFile photo dated 24-06-2020 of Manchester United's Marcus Rashford. PA Photo. Issue date: Wednesday October 21, 2020. Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford warned MPs not to “turn a blind eye” to vulnerable families as the Commons prepared to vote on a Labour call to extend free school meals over the holidays. See PA story SOCCER Rashford. Photo credit should read Martin Rickett/PA Wire

England football star Marcus Rashford, who was recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for his free school meal campaign, has vowed to keep fighting.

Reacting to the vote, the Manchester United and England striker said: “Put aside all the noise, the digs, the party politics and let’s focus on the reality.

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

“We must stop stigmatising, judging and pointing fingers. Our views are being clouded by political affiliation.

MP Richard BaconMP Richard Bacon

“This is not politics, this is humanity.”

The player added that child food poverty “has the potential to become the greatest pandemic the country has ever faced”.

He said: “We must start working together and unite to protect our most vulnerable children. No more sticking plasters. Let’s face this head on.

“I don’t have the education of a politician, many on Twitter have made that clear today, but I have a social education having lived through this and having spent time with the families and children most affected.

Jerome Mayhew (left), Liz Truss (right). Picture: Danielle Booden/Victoria PertusaJerome Mayhew (left), Liz Truss (right). Picture: Danielle Booden/Victoria Pertusa

“These children matter. These children are the future of this country. They are not just another statistic. And for as long as they don’t have a voice, they will have mine. You have my word on that.”


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Eastern Daily Press. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Eastern Daily Press