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Food Hygiene Alert

The Vectis Party have uncovered concerns over food hygiene standards in educational, health and care institutions on the Isle of Wight. A search of the current food hygiene standards reveals that a staggering thirty four such locations do not have a full five star rating. Fifteen do not even manage four stars and eight have only two or one. These are institutions to which we entrust ourselves and our loved ones from the very young to the very old. The public need to be able to rely on these places and would rightly see a failure in food standards as a possible indicator of a greater failure in the duty of care. If food standards are neglected then what else is happening?

 

The footballer Marcus Rashford recently led a campaign around providing food in schools and forced the government to back down. Was his victory empty if the food provided in schools does not hold a five star rating? We are sure he didn’t think that he could be condemning children to sub-standard meals. There is no excuse for any school on the island to not handle food properly and all should be fully compliant with the regulations.

 

The situation is care homes and health is no better. These are supposed to be places of recovery and rest and are home to some of our most vulnerable individuals. The young are mostly strong but the elderly placed in homes are often frail and in need. The people that have cared for us as we grew up deserve our best care as they grow old. Good food is a prerequisite for maintaining good health into old age and yet here too many places are failing to maintain standards.

 

The key point is that these are institutions. It is not like a café or restaurant where you can move on to the next outlet. People in care homes, medical facilities and schools cannot go down the road to have lunch at the next place. These institutions are also either mainly or partially supported by the public purse, even if privately owned. They should all be able to maintain proper food hygiene standards. The fact that they do not is shocking.

 

The Vectis Party calls upon the Isle of Wight Council to confirm if it knew about this situation, what action it has taken and explain when that action (if any) will result in five star ratings across the board.

 

The Vectis Party see public health as a top priority and as such we will focus on raising food standards in all education, health and care institutions. Initially we favour a cooperative approach and trying to used education and support to these facilities in order for them to raise their game. However this is serious and as such we would be ready to take enforcement action where needed. The young, the old and those in need who use these institutions deserve to be able to rely on the food on their plate.