Hertford & Stortford CLP
Labour Raise Urgent Questions on Use of Free School Meals Vouchers at Asda, Ware
Hertford & Stortford Labour Party have raised urgent questions on the use of free school meal vouchers at Asda’s Superstore in Ware. This follows reports from local media that staff in-store have allegedly been instructed to confiscate printed FSM vouchers following their use, regardless of their remaining balance.
FSM vouchers have been distributed to children and vulnerable families to ensure that they do not go hungry this winter, as part of Hertfordshire County Council’s £2.49 million share of the government’s COVID Winter Grant scheme.
Herts County Council’s guidance on Free School Meal vouchers clearly states the following: “You can use the full £30 to get vouchers in one supermarket or split the amount across different supermarkets if you want to. For example, you could use £15 for Tesco and £15 for Sainsburys.”
“It’s heartrending to read reports like these, especially at Christmas and especially as our community is plunged into Tier 4 restrictions,” Josh Dean, Chair of Hertford & Stortford Labour Party said, “These free school meal vouchers offer a life line to vulnerable families and children. It would be unconscionable to show such disregard for the needs of others at Christmas and to allow these families to go hungry.”
Hertford & Stortford Labour Party have written to Asda’s customer service team to raise urgent questions and seek clarifications in regards to the conduct of staff in their Ware branch alleged in these reports.
“Asda’s customer service team must urgently confirm whether these reports are true. If these allegations are to be believed, Asda must confirm on what grounds they confiscated these vouchers and what action they will take to fix this situation,” Josh added.
Hertford & Stortford Labour Party strongly encourage any families or parents who have experienced this issue to urgently seek a refund from Asda in Ware.