Mansfield MP's victory as government protect free school meal vouchers from misuse
Mansfield MP Ben Bradley has welcomed the government’s decision to work with supermarkets to put restrictions in place to stop free school meal vouchers being misused after he initially raised concerns.
The Conservative MP said he is now ‘relieved’ to hear the most vulnerable children will be protected after he shared his worries that free school meal vouchers for children during the coronavirus crisis were being used for cigarettes or alcohol in June.
Mr Bradley highlighted that ‘not all children live in happy, healthy households’ during the Free School Meals debate last month and expressed his concerns that some parents would not use free school meal vouchers to make healthy meals for vulnerable children.
However the Mansfield representative’s comments attracted controversy with some political opponents claiming they ‘demonised’ the working class.
The government has now confirmed that they are putting safeguards in place to prevent the coupons from being misused and that children are fed.
Ben Bradley said: “I received a lot of criticism for my comments in the Chamber when I highlighted the fact that some parents do neglect their children and will put their own needs first.
"Honestly, I don’t see anything controversial about speaking up to protect vulnerable kids.
“Despite receiving so much flack, I’m glad I spoke up because now I’ve helped to ensure that a parent who might otherwise have spent their £90 on spirits will now only be able to purchase food for their child.”