Friday, October 27, 2017

UK: Council bans Halal meat for school meals

(Preston)  Councillors in Lancashire have voted to ban unstunned halal meat from being served in schools. Lancashire County Council made the decision to stop using it in 27council-run schools at a meeting earlier. From December, the schools will only serve stunned halal beef and lamb after councillors voted by 41 to 24 against, with 15 abstentions.

Council leader Geoff Driver described the practice of not stunning animals before slaughtering them as "abhorrent" and "really cruel". A call for further discussion with Jewish and Muslim groups was rejected.

Lancashire Council of Mosques (LCM) has accused Driver of leading a “crusade” on the issue. Abdul Qureshi, the LCM’s chair, said any decision to ban unstunned halal meat would create a huge difficulty.

“People will pull out of school meals and people who should eat properly will be deprived of that. For us it’s a matter of faith. For Geoff Driver it is his feelings,”
Cllr Ali expressing concern that Muslim parents would withdraw their children from school meals which for those from deprived families was ‘their only hot nutritious food of the day’.

Labour councillor Lorraine Beavers said 12,000 children in Lancashire were being used as a “political football”. She said the motion sent a message to children of a particular faith that they were not being respected by the Conservative-led council.