Children suffering from food poisoning as parents turn off fridges amid cost of living crisis

Children are suffering from food poisoning and wearing dirty clothes as parents switch off major appliances in a desperate bid to save money amid the cost of living crisis, campaigners say.

The manager of a food bank in Cornwall said several local children were battling food poisoning after eating food that went out after sitting in a disconnected fridge or freezer.

He also said parents are choosing to send their children to school in unwashed clothes in favor of keeping their washing machines off to save as much as possible.

Simon Fann, who runs a food bank in Truro, told The Times yesterday: ‘I have been told I have been told by schools that children are suffering from food poisoning because some parents are turning off their fridges and freezers overnight ‘, before adding: ‘It’s not a Cornwall-specific thing.

Meanwhile, energy expert Aled Stephens of the Energy Saving Trust said these appliances work best when left on and households that turn them off may actually see their energy consumption increase.

“Refrigerators and freezers are designed to stay on all the time,” he said.

“They automatically cool down to the set temperature, so you don’t have to turn them on and off yourself.

“You won’t save energy by turning your fridge off for short periods of time, because it will just use more energy to cool itself down again when you turn it back on.

The manager of a food bank in Cornwall said several local children were battling food poisoning after eating food that went out after sitting in a fridge or freezer that their parents had unplugged at night to save energy.

On average, secondary schools are now estimated to spend more than £161,000 on energy while primary schools spend around £32,000, according to data compiled by the House of Commons Library.

On average, secondary schools are now estimated to spend more than £161,000 on energy while primary schools spend around £32,000, according to data compiled by the House of Commons Library.

E.ON UK CEO Michael Lewis calls for greater government intervention to help customers with "unprecedented" increased energy bills

E.ON UK CEO Michael Lewis calls for greater government intervention to help customers cope with ‘unprecedented’ rise in energy bills

Millions of Britons are scrambling to reduce their energy use and cut costs amid soaring energy prices and inflation.

The boss of energy supplier E.ON told the BBC yesterday the energy cap could be as high as £2,800 and called for ‘substantial’ government intervention to try to stop millions falling into poverty energy.

Michael Lewis, chief executive of the energy company, said the continued rise in energy prices was “unprecedented” and called for increased Universal Credit and Warm Homes rebate program payments.

He said 40% of his eight million UK customers would be in fuel poverty by October if the government did not help, and suggested he would tax “those with the broadest shoulders” to achieve this.

“We see a significant number of people in energy poverty – meaning more than 10% of their disposable income spent on energy,” Lewis said.

He added that 20% of people were in fuel poverty and that figure could rise to 40% without “very substantial” government intervention.

It comes as Labor has warned that children’s education could be badly affected by the energy crisis as schools continue to shell out incredible sums just to keep the lights on.

The party said children’s futures were at risk, citing government data that shows the cost of energy for public schools after a projected 93% increase by the end of 2021.

On average, secondary schools are now estimated to spend more than £161,000 on energy while primary schools spend around £32,000, according to data compiled by the House of Commons Library.

Schools are not covered by the energy price cap, which only applies to domestic customers.

Shadow Schools Minister Stephen Morgan has called on Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi to come up with “a proper plan” to tackle energy costs in schools.

The Shadow Schools Minister said:

The shadow schools minister said: ‘Ministers must urgently rein in and work with schools to ensure that rising costs do not deprive children of other opportunities’ (Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi is pictured talking to the BBC on Sunday morning)

Schools face mounting budget pressures from inflation and sky-high energy prices, which could jeopardize children's education

Schools face mounting budget pressures from inflation and sky-high energy prices, which could jeopardize children’s education

He said: “Children have already faced huge disruption due to the government’s chaotic handling of the pandemic and now the cost of living crisis, made worse by Downing Street, is further squeezing school budgets.

“Ministers must pull themselves together and urgently work with schools to ensure that rising costs do not deprive children of new opportunities.

“The Labor calls on the Government to prioritize children’s learning and development post-pandemic, with breakfast and after-school clubs, tutoring and mental health support.

“The Education Secretary must match this ambition with an appropriate plan to secure the future of children.”

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