The Government will not remain “static” on free school meals, the Defence Secretary has said today, as he stressed how “incredibly generous” it has been so far. 

Ben Wallce defended the support that has been increased in response to the pandemic, including a rise in Universal Credit and £63 million being given to local councils “to focus specifically on families in need.”

But he added: “The Government will always look at cases as they come in front of them, that is part of the function of the Government, which is to problem-solve as we see something.

“If there is still need or if this Covid crisis continues to kick in and more lockdowns happen, of course the Government will look at other alternatives, or other solutions. We’re not going to sit there in a static environment.”

He went on: “Overall this Government has been, from everything from business rate relief, to wages subsidies, to increase in benefits, has been incredibly generous with tax receipts to make sure we get through this crisis.

“I don’t think anyone can say – our schemes are some of the most generous in Europe – and I think as a result people will understand that we’re always trying to make sure that when we help, we help those most in need, but at the same time balance the other requirements of the economy and indeed of public spending.”


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