Wed 18 Mar, 2020

Our focus must now move to managing the impact this will have on children and young people, particularly those who are already vulnerable Ross Greer

Free school meals for low-income families should continue in communities after schools close at the end of the week, the Scottish Greens have said.

Scottish Green education spokesperson Ross Greer has written to Education Secretary John Swinney, urging continuity measures be put in place to ensure those who rely on schools for meals do not miss out as a result of the closures.

The Greens have published outline proposals for how such services could continue, using council staff from suspended services such as leisure centres, libraries and schools themselves to deliver meals, potentially alongside Royal Mail workers, who have offered to become an additional emergency service.

The Greens’ proposals also suggest the expansion of such a scheme to include other vulnerable and self-isolating individuals within communities.

Commenting, Ross Greer said: “Closing schools has become unavoidable and we should welcome what would have been a difficult but necessary decision for the government. Our focus must now move to managing the impact this will have on children and young people, particularly those who are already vulnerable.

“That means making sure those who rely on school for meals and security are offered urgent support. Scotland has the capacity to provide food to those who need it. Now we need to ensure families who depend on the support of breakfast clubs or free school lunches are not pushed into extreme difficulties by these closures.”

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