A SENIOR local Labour councillor has slammed an Oxfordshire MP after a vote calling on the Government to fund free school meals throughout the holiday was rejected by Parliament.

Labour had called on the government to extend free school meals in the school holidays, including the upcoming October half term and Christmas, as part of a Labour campaign to ensure that no child goes hungry during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Party had previously given Boris Johnson and Chancellor Rishi Sunak 72 hours to
change their position and provide this support. 

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With the deadline expired, the Party forced a Commons vote on the issue. This was rejected by 322 votes to 261 with Banbury's MP Victoria Prentis among those voting against.

Labour says that in the Banbury and Bicester constituency, 2,092 children are at risk of going hungry over the holidays as the government withdraws support for the provision of free school meals.

The October half term comes as millions of families face a furlough cliff-edge that could see jobs across the country at risk, at the same time as millions of families face tighter restrictions.

Banbury councillor Sean Woodcock, leader of the Labour group in Cherwell said: “Millions of families face the prospect of losing their livelihoods because the
government has lost control of the virus.

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"It’s sink-or-swim plans for support could leave more than one million children at risk of going hungry over the school holidays including thousands in North Oxfordshire.

“Now is the time to act. But our Member of Parliament has chosen to prioritise this incompetent government over children who are going hungry."

Ms Prentis has been contacted for comment.