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Liberal Democrats unveil plan to offer free school meals for every primary pupil

3rd Jun 2024 - 08:28
Liberal Democrats unveils plan to offer free school meals
Ahead of the July General Election, The Liberal Democrats have launched their ambition to extend free school meals to all primary schoolchildren funded by a new share buyback tax.

The party’s plan includes an immediate extension of free school meals to all 900,000 children living in poverty who currently miss out. The second phase would see all primary schoolchildren receiving free school meals as the public finances stabilise.

The manifesto pledge would be funded by a 4% levy on the share buybacks of FTSE 100 listed corporations, similar to the excise tax on buybacks implemented by President Biden in the US, which could raise around £1.4bn a year.

Ed Davey, leader of the Liberal Democrats, commented: “Across the country, I hear heartbreaking stories of children going to school with empty packed lunch boxes as parents struggle to cover even the basic costs. 

“Conservative MPs should hang their heads in shame at a legacy of children going hungry in the worst cost of living crisis in a generation. Children cannot be expected to learn on empty stomachs with no guarantee of a hot meal when they get home."

Written by
Edward Waddell