Friday 23 October 2020 4:48 pm

City of London to provide schoolchildren with free food vouchers over half term

The City of London Corporation will provide food vouchers for schoolchildren eligible for free school meals over half term.

It is the latest local authority to announce the step after the government elected not to make free meals available over the next six months.

Other London councils such as Kensington & Chelsea, Lambeth, and Southwark have all announced they will do the same.

The decision to provide students with free meals comes after a sustained campaign by Manchester United and England footballer Marcus Rashford.

Parents, carers and families whose children are eligible for free school meals will be able to collect the vouchers from Guildhall from Monday 26 October.

In exceptional circumstances, parents will be able to discuss arrangements for these to be delivered instead, the City Corporation added.

Before the Open newsletter: Start your day with the City View podcast and key market data

Chair of the City of London Corporation’s policy and resources Committee, Catherine McGuinness, said:

“The impact of the Coronavirus has been profound on young people across the country, especially those who come from disadvantaged backgrounds.

“This extra support will provide a helping hand to those families that need it the most.”

The decision not to extend government funding to cover free meals came after a Labour call to make them available was voted down in parliament last night.

It has met with a huge backlash across the country, with local authorities taking matters into their own hands instead.