Autumn Statement response from CPAG in Scotland

5 December 2013
Scottish Ministers urged to prioritise free school meals as Autumn Statement fails Scotland's children

Responding to today's (5 December) UK Autumn Statement John Dickie, Head of CPAG in Scotland, said:

"The Chancellor has failed to take the action needed to reverse the explosion in child poverty forecast across Scotland and the rest of the UK, an explosion that results from his own government's unfair policies. Worse still an arbitrary cap on benefit spending risks making vulnerable children pay an even greater price for government failure. Disabled people and the poorest children are essentially being told that their basic support could be rationed to balance the books.

One piece of good news is confirmation that south of the Border all children in the first three years of primary will receive a free healthy school meal. It is now vital that the Scottish Government prioritises additional resources to deliver on its own promise to give every child in P1 to P3 a free healthy school lunch. The evidence is stronger than ever that universal free school lunches would boost attainment, promote health and wellbeing and relieve hard pressed family budgets in the face of damaging UK government cuts.”