Marcus Rashford criticises Tory MP over food poverty comments

6 September 2020, 15:13 | Updated: 6 September 2020, 15:19

Marcus Rashford has criticised a Tory MP for his comments
Marcus Rashford has criticised a Tory MP for his comments. Picture: PA

By Maddie Goodfellow

Footballer Marcus Rashford has criticised a Conservative MP his comments on child hunger, saying he needs to "talk to families".

The Manchester United and England striker was successful in campaigning for free school meal vouchers to be provided to pupils over the summer period.

Kevin Hollinrake, MP for Thirsk and Malton, was praising the Government's Eat Out to Help Out scheme when he replied to a comment from a Twitter user who said: "Whilst we're discussing food, why does it take footballer Marcus Rashford to make a stand for the hungry children in our society? Is that not the governments job?"

The Tory MP replied: "Where they can, it's a parents' job to feed their children."

Mr Rashford explained that the comment could prevent families from asking for help.

"I would urge you to talk to families before tweeting. To this day I haven't met one parent who hasn't wanted or felt the responsibility to feed their children," Mr Rashford said.

"Put to the side that this comment came from an MP. It's comments like this that prevent people from speaking their truth and asking for help. We need to start uplifting each other."

Mr Hollinrake has not yet publicly replied to Mr Rashford's comment.

It is not the first time Rashford has sparred with a Tory MP.

Work and Pensions Secretary Therese Coffey rowed with Rashford in June when she took issue with him asking people to "think about parents who have had their water turned off during lockdown".

He has now teamed up with Aldi, Asda, Co-op, Deliveroo, FareShare, Food Foundation, Iceland, Kellogg's, Lidl, Sainsbury's, Tesco and Waitrose to form the Child Food Poverty Task Force, which is endorsing three national policy recommendations.