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£100k to Help Over 22,000 Children in Poverty in Milton Keynes

by Richard Greenwood on 26 February, 2021

Thanks to a successful Liberal Democrat amendment to the Council’s 2021/22 budget on Wednesday night, Milton Keynes is one step further in its fight against child poverty.

The budget will now have:

  • £35,000 for progressing the Council’s Poverty Strategy
  • £30,000 for setting up Homework Plus, which are community-based homework clubs that also provide a meal to children
  • £35,000 for positive activity sessions through Children’s Centres, which include physical exercise and group activities to build resilience and strengthen purpose amongst parents and children in material need

The Liberal Democrats have been continually fighting child poverty in Milton Keynes, having been the Group to actually call for the Child Poverty Commission to be set up in 2019.

In 2020 the Liberal Democrats spoke out after Milton Keynes MPs Ben Everitt and Iain Stewart voted against plans to extend free school meals for children during the school holidays.

The Group then brought a successful motion to Council, asking Cabinet to lobby for more permanent change to the free school meals system, so that no child has to go hungry.

Cllr Jane Carr

Liberal Democrat Councillor Jane Carr, who also Chairs the Children & Young People Scrutiny Committee, said: “I am relieved our amendment was accepted, and the budget now has £100,000 more to tackle child poverty.

There are over 22,000 children in Milton Keynes in poverty after housing costs are considered, and the Council needs to be doing everything it can to help them.

This is a nationwide problem that requires a nationwide solution from the Conservative government, but I am glad we can start to make a difference now here in Milton Keynes.

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