A child excluded from the canteen for unpaid bills: the Defender of Rights opens an investigation

The Defender of Rights, Claire Hédon, spoke “Automatic seizure” in order to investigate the situation of a 7-year-old child excluded from his school canteen in Saint-Médard-de-Guizières (Gironde) due to unpaid bills by his parents.

According to several media, the child was escorted home Thursday, September 9, at lunchtime by a municipal police officer. “Children must be left out of conflicts between their parents and the administration”, recalled Mme Hedon, in a press release.

800 euros of debt

The mayor of the town, Mireille Conte-Jaubert, said in the newspaper on Sunday South West that she begged the mother of the child “Since 2019” about this bad debt. The debt would amount to 800 euros, or “350, or even 400 meals”, explained the elected.

“I followed what will be called the procedure. No municipal employee or I could accompany this child. He had to be accompanied by the municipal policeman (…) or else, as a final solution, I had to contact social services so that they could come and pick it up. Of all the methods, I chose the least ”, she still defended on BFM-TV.

In a report published in June 2019, the Defender of Rights had already called for “Ban the practice of” humiliating lunch “aimed at serving children with differentiated menus in order to put pressure on parents and not resort to exclusions”.

Read also The “lunch shaming”, or how school canteens humiliate underprivileged children

The World with AFP


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