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Joint statement from public health leaders on Free School Meals for all primary school pupils in London

Following our cross-sector call last year for Government to improve the health and development of children across the country by expanding access to Free School Meals, the National School Breakfast Programme and the Healthy Start Scheme, we are pleased to see that once again, the Mayor of London will be extending free school meals to every primary school child in the capital.

The scheme will support tens of thousands of children across London, but there are hundreds of thousands more living in poverty across the UK who do not have access to this vital lifeline and we urge the Government to end the postcode lottery for families in England and commit to funding free school meals for all primary school children.

In a special event next week hosted by Baroness Frances D’Souza and Baroness Ruth Lister of Burtersett, a coalition of health leaders will be hosting an event in the House of Lords to launch a new report on children’s food. ‘The Health of the Next Generation – Good Food for Children’ will focus on how to support all children to eat healthily, achieve their potential and relieve the burden and consequences of food insecurity for at-risk children.

Faculty of Public Health

Association of Directors of Public Health

British Association for Child and Adolescent Public Health

Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health

Royal Society of Medicine

Royal Society of Public Health

School And Public Health Nurses Association

Published 10 January 2024

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