Stuart Brady, Labour’s candidate for Loughborough in the next general election has written to local Tory MP Nicky Morgan urging her to put Leicestershire’s poorest children before Party loyalty next week, by voting against a Government plan to impose an income threshold on families currently receiving universal credit.
The policy, which the Government sought to sneak through without a vote, will mean over 16,000 of Leicestershire’s children, many growing up in poverty, will not be able to access a free school meal, according to the Children’s Society. The charity estimates it could affect over a million children across the country.
For some children, this could literally mean the difference between eating a hot meal that day, or going hungry.
As part of the same measure, the government is also planning to remove free childcare from those earning above the threshold.
For those Leicestershire families that are affected, the income threshold will create a cliff-edge, meaning some parents could be better off either reducing their hours, or not taking additional hours or pay rises, because moving just above the income threshold would leave them hundreds of pounds worse off for each child affected. This directly undermines the Government’s stated aim of Universal Credit, to make work pay.
The Government’s plans to restrict free school meals and free childcare will be brought to the Commons next week, following an intervention from Labour to bring these heartless and short sighted plans to a binding vote.
Stuart Brady, Labour’s candidate for Loughborough in the next general, has written to Nicky Morgan, calling on her to vote the plans down.
Speaking about the Government plans, Stuart said:
“The Tories are trying to leave over a million children without access to free school meals, that’s potentially 16,000 in our area alone.
“If Nicky Morgan votes to literally take hot dinners away from the children of her constituents, I don’t know how she will be able to hold her head high in our town.
“The vote on Tuesday gives her an opportunity to show just whose side she is on; the poorest children in her constituency, or this Tory government imposing heartless cuts on low income families.
“I have written to Nicky asking her to consider her priorities on Tuesday.”