Help for holiday hunger

Preston Town Hall
Preston Town Hall
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A city councillor is highlighting the plight of disadvantaged children who face going hungry over holiday periods due to the absence of school meals.

Labour’s Coun Jade Morgan hopes to convince her colleagues to back a motion outlining the council’s support for a parliamentary “holiday hunger bill.”

The Bill, proposed by Frank Field MP, would place a legal duty on local authorities to ensure free meals for youngsters who would otherwise go without, funded by increased tax on sugary drinks.

Coun Morgan (pictured), who represents St Matthew’s ward, said: “As one of the richest nations in the world, it is thoroughly shocking that over three million children are currently at risk of going hungry during the school holidays - two million of which come from families with working parents. I am sure this number is set to rise.

“There are many solutions that could help to alleviate the glaring issue of holiday hunger, I am just hoping the motion is a first step towards doing that.”

Coun Morgan’s motion will affirm the council’s support for the bill, which is currently progressing through the parliamentary process and has been sponsored by Preston Labour MP Mark Hendrick.

It also asks for the council to write to Conservative MPs Ben Wallace (Wyre and Preston North) and Mark Menzies (Fylde) asking for their support.

Earlier this year a Lancashire charity said demand for food parcels had risen sharply during the school holidays. Volunteers for Living Waters Food Bank in Chorley handed out hundreds of lunches.

The motion will go before full council on Thursday, October 19.