I welcome the change of direction and that had caused a lot of controversy and there were so many families affected by the issue Committee chairman Cllr Rob Hannaford
Committee chairman Cllr Rob Hannaford

Committee chairman Cllr Rob Hannaford had prior to Monday’s announcement put forward a motion to December’s full council meeting that would see the council resolve to use some of the allocated hardship funding to ensure that all eligible children receive free school meal vouchers for the Christmas and New Year holiday period.

He said: “I welcome the change of direction and that had caused a lot of controversy and there were so many families affected by the issue.” Asking Mrs Stabb, he said: “In your opinion, does the current package do all that we would want it to do in Devon and what members wanted it to and can you see in the new scheme, much welcome as it is, any gaps we may need to plug to make sure no families slip through the net?”

In response, she said while they only currently have the headline figures, it is a massive step forward of getting the support to families.

She added: “The route is correct, the principle is correct, we have the infrastructure in place to deliver it, but we don’t have the exact detail as to how the funding will be applied or any other restrictions. I cannot give a categorical answer but if it is properly implemented, it should move us significantly in the right direction. The key focus is to ensure food makes its way to children.”

https://exmouth.nub.news/n/devon-children-entitled-to-free-school-meals-will-get-free-food-over-the-christmas-holiday

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