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asked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster whether he will consider altering or supplementing Regulations 7 and 8 on ration books, in view of the possibility that the feeding of necessitous children, all communal feeding in elementary and secondary schools and juvenile instruction centres may have to be curtailed or stopped if parents of children so fed hand the whole of the meat vouchers to butchers; and will he take steps to ensure that a fair proportion of meat vouchers are handed to the above centres?
The instructions cannot cover in detail every individual case, and I think that those referred to by the hon. Member clearly imply that a whole page of coupons should not be deposited with a retailer if it is intended to have some meals of the rationed food away from home. The particular cases in the hon. Member's mind are under consideration at the present time.
asked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster whether he is aware that on 18th October an official of the Food Ministry called at the town hall of the Borough of Southwark and gave instructions that the food ration cards were to be ready for distribution by the morning of Monday, 23rd October; that the payment of overtime was necessitated to permit the work to be done; and that the cards are still lying at the town hall without any instructions for issue, and why this was done?
Instructions were given to local food offices that the particulars in the ration books should be filled in as soon as possible after the National Registration schedules became available so that if rationing became necessary the scheme could be put into operation with the minimum delay. I have made inquiries into the case referred to by the hon. Member and understand that the food executive officer, in arranging for the expedition of the work, was acting on the advice of a representative of the divisional food officer. As regards the last part of the question, I would ask the hon. Member to await my statement at the end of Questions.