GMB Calls On Dundee City And Angus Councils To End ‘Two-Tier School Meals’ Across Tayside
GMB Scotland, the union for school catering staff, has called on the Deputy First Minister, and Scotland's Education Secretary, John Swinney, to intervene in proposals for the Tayside Central Production Unit which will cook and then freeze school meals to be transported to local schools and reheated before being served to children across Dundee and Angus.
Earlier this year, Mr Swinney expressed concern to the Scottish Parliament that the proposal would “undermine the quality” of school meals and “affect employment” across councils. As a result children in John Swinney's North Perthshire constituency will continue to be served fresh meals after Perth and Kinross Council dropped out of the scheme. GMB Scotland has also challenged Tayside's other politicians to speak out too.
GMB Scotland Organiser Helen Meldrum said: “The future of school meals and the staff who deliver them is really a question of whether Tayside's politicians are prepared to stand up for their communities in a time of austerity.
“If frozen food isn’t good enough for school children in Perthshire, and John Swinney is right to say that it isn't, then why should it be any different for kids in Dundee and Angus? And if a frozen food assembly line isn’t good enough for school cooks in Perth and Kinross Council then why should it be any different for staff in Dundee and Angus?
“Quite rightly, the Deputy First Minister weighed-in hard to defend the interests of kids and staff in his own back yard – why can’t the politicians in Dundee and Angus do likewise?
“The choice between fresh or frozen food for our kids and kitchens or assembly lines for our staff shouldn’t be up for debate and quite frankly, politicians in Dundee and Angus need to follow Mr Swinney’s lead and make clear that this isn't on.
“If they won't, then Mr Swinney should make clear that the Scottish Government expects the same fresh school food for Dundee and Angus as he demanded for children in his own area.”
Contact: GMB Senior Organiser Drew Duffy on 07912 560806 or GMB Scotland Organiser Helen Meldrum on 07958 156838.
Notes to Editors:
Please find a link to GMB Scotland’s letter to Deputy First Minister John Swinney MSP https://tinyurl.com/y6apmgsa