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Welfare Up to a million poor kids face loss of free school dinners

A MILLION children with low-paid parents would lose out on free school meals in England, shadow education secretary Angela Rayner told MPs yesterday before they went to vote.

In a three-hour debate on four motions to annul government amendments to universal credit, Labour sought to block a raising of universal credit benefit thresholds that could see up to a million youngsters denied free lunches if their parents earn more than £7,400 a year.

Ms Rayner said: “Many people, including MPs, wrongly believe that all children living in poverty get free school meals and under the transitory deal they would.

“Under the secondary legislation the rug would be pulled from under these families … The ones in work would be affected the most.”

MPs also debated a statutory instrument that would result in hundreds of thousands of parents on the benefit having to fork out upfront costs for free childcare when moving from vouchers to tax-free schemes.

The vote was held after the Star went to print.


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