In Massachusetts, 25 school children denied lunch after having difficulty paying for the meals caused an uproar when the situation was publicized, and now a worker has been suspended for what was by all accounts a pretty terrible incident.
The students who were denied school lunches attend Coelho Middle School, whose food services are managed by Whitsons Culinary Group. On Tuesday, it was discovered that some kids had insufficient funds in their lunch accounts or lacked money to pay for their lunch.
Further, it was reported that some of the students denied lunch had selected and prepared to pay for meals and that when their low or depleted funds were discovered, the food they were planning to purchase was thrown out rather than being given to the hungry kids.
One parent whose child was one of the students who went hungry that day complained: “I’m pissed that when there are people in prison who are getting meals, my daughter, an honor student, is going hungry.”
After the controversy exploded, a rep for Whitsons tried to corral the outrage over the kids who were denied lunch, some of whom reportedly cried as they were forced to throw their food away rather than eat it:
“We agree that this situation was not handled correctly. We really want to apologize to the parents of the children who were affected.”
In the wake of the controversy, a worker involved in the situation has been suspended, but no details were given as to what other corrective measures the culinary group would take to prevent another such occurrence.
Policy dictates that kids who lack the money to pay are not denied lunch but supplied a cheese sandwich and milk. It is also not clear as to why this did not occur.