Councillor calls on Cheshire East to extend food voucher scheme

Cheshire East Councillor Anthony Chritchley

Councillor Anthony Critchley

Labour Councillor Anthony Critchley called on Cheshire East Council to extend food vouchers to parents outside of term time.

The request comes after the Labour councillor published a letter sent to Cheshire East on his Twitter account.

The appeal comes following a Labour Party motion in the House of Commons to extend the free school meal program was defeated.

In the letter sent to council Leader Sam Corcoran, Councillor Critchley said:

We have learned today that Cheshire East Council has been awarded £2,577,565 in the latest round of government funding. While we continue to welcome the government funding announcements, the challenge of managing council budget in the face of additional demands and costs of COVID remains.

Are there any plans or any scope with this recent tranche of money to, as an authority extend the vouchers to the parents of those children in Cheshire East who will not reive them for the upcoming school holidays?

In the letter Councillor Critchley also says:

Taking the politics out of the situation, I’m sure that you can accept that we now have a large number of parents on less than 100% wages or worse still redundant as their furlough/job retention scheme finishes in a few days time. The same parents who were supported through the Easter and summer break with the government doing the right thing and supplying vouchers. No child should be forced to go hungry and no parent should feel the need to go hungry themselves as a result of putting their child first.

Former Labour Councillor Laura Smith, former MP for Crewe and Nantwich tweeted her support for Councillor Critchley’s proposal.

Local Conservative MP Dr Kieran Mullan voted against the motion and caused controversy when he defended his position in a response posted on his Facebook page.

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