Marcus Rashford has pleaded with the Prime Minister to stop the plans to cut the £20-a-week uplift to Universal Credit.
The 23-year-old Manchester United player, who last year successfully campaigned to get children free school meals, asked Boris Johnson not to axe the extra cash on October 6, the Mirror reports.
He warned: “Instead of removing vital support, we should be focusing on developing a long-term roadmap out of this child hunger pandemic.”
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Adding: “On October 6, millions lose a lifeline. It’s a move that Child Poverty Action Group says will raise child poverty to one in three.”
According to a poll by The Food Foundation charity, almost eight in 10 on Universal Credit will find it harder to feed their children when they become £80 a month worse off under a cut.
The charity has now teamed up with Marcus to urge people to write to their MPs in a bid to get the government to listen.
They want the PM to adopt recommendations to prevent child hunger - meaning more qualifying for free school means, long-term funding for holiday programmes and boosting "healthy start" support for pregnant women and under 5s.
Anna Taylor of the Food Foundation added: “We’re in danger of pushing the poorest to breaking point. Many won’t be able to put food on the table.”
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Some five million households are on UC. The temporary uplift was announced in March last year as the first lockdown began. Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Jonathan Reynolds calls the cut a “catastrophe”.
Visit Marcus’s campaign at endchildfoodpoverty.org/write-now and follow the steps to write to your local MP
Marjorie Armson is a parent who regularly skips meals, always prioritising filling her 16-year-old daughter’s stomach over her own when her money for the month has run out.
She said: “Charlotte says to me, ‘Mummy, why aren’t you eating?’
“But I tell her I’ve just had a bit of bread and I’m fine.”
Marjorie, 54, a widow and single mum from Colchester, Essex, has been forced to shield for 18 months due to bad asthma and relies on Universal Credit payments. She said: “I’m very worried about the rising energy prices as I’ve just got a smart meter fitted and I have to feed it money in order to get gas and electricity.
“I’m worried it’s going to run out very quickly – and then what are we going to do?” Marjorie, who was receiving £380 a month when off sick, has just gone back to work part-time, escorting kids to and from school.
She said: “Both Charlotte and I have bad asthma and I’m petrified we’re going to get ill from having to sit in the cold at home. I’m already struggling and have debts but this is going to cripple us.”
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