Tory MP casts doubt on poverty claims by local primary schools

From The Guardian: A row is brewing between a Conservative MP and some of his Lancashire constituents after he suggested that claims by teachers about extreme poverty at local schools were untrue.

A report by ITV earlier this week went viral after it showed schools where teachers said they had to wash their pupils’ uniforms because their families couldn’t afford to pay the electricity bills.

But David Morris, the MP for Morecambe & Lunesdale, responded to the reports: “These claims are not those being experienced by myself or the jobcentre in the area.”

He later told ITV: “I’ve not got issues with the report that you’ve run, I’m just questioning the validity of it … [the schools featured] have very strong links to Momentum, and to be quite frank, all the indicators from Ofsted say that the child poverty at that school is absolutely no different to any other in the country.”

Amid claims that Morris has blocked people online who have questioned his statement, Morecambe residents are using the hashtag #blockedbydavidmorris and have started a Facebook group to air their grievances.

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