Thursday, May 21, 2009

The case for free school meals for all primary school children

The campaign for free school meals for all primary school children got off to a great start yesterday. MP's Sharon Hodgeson,(above)and Roberta Blackman-Wood invited the Children's Food Campaign, teaching unions and anti poverty campaigners to a meeting at Westminster to plan a campaign.

We want to build the case on the following points:

1) Improving children's health
2)Overcoming health inequalities amongst poorer families
3)Removing the poverty trap that prevents parents moving into employment
4)Supporting the rural economy and promoting sustainable food.

It will be crucial that we build a wide coalition of supporters. In particular we need to find a way to connect with local food producers and those working in the rural economy.

I haven't got time to go into any detail today - am about to head off to a School Food Trust event on monitoring school food standards, but will be sure to return to this subject soon!

This is an idea whose time has come. The crisis in children's health, the appalling economic hardships facing families and the difficulties facing our farmers could all be helped massively with this one initative.