French Green Party mayor BANS schools from serving meat in Lyon: Political rivals accuse him of ‘putting ideology on children’s plates’
- Mayor of Lyon Gregory Doucet said a school dinner without meat would ensure smooth service at lunchtime while social distancing measures are in place
- But political rivals accused him of insulting the country’s butchers and trying to impose his ideology on children
- Doucet hit back and said his right-wing predecessor mayor Gerard Collomb had taken ‘exactly the same measure’ during the first wave of the pandemic
The French government has accused the Green Party mayor of Lyon of insulting the country’s butchers and ‘putting ideology on children’s plates’ after he banned schools in the city from serving meat.
Mayor Gregory Doucet defended the decision, saying the idea of having a school dinner menu without meat was to ensure a smooth service at lunchtimes while social distancing measures are in place.
The new ‘one-time menu measure’ means that children will be not be given a choice when it comes to their starter, hot dish and dessert.
Doucet said it would help speed up the lunchtime queues and enable teachers to manage the two-metre rule during the pandemic.
The French government has accused Lyon’s mayor Gregory Doucet of insulting the country’s butchers and ‘putting ideology on children’s plates’ after he banned schools in the city from serving meat
But the government pounced on the mayor, who was one of a number of Green politicians to win control of major cities in last year’s local elections seen as a drubbing for the party of President Emmanuel Macron.
Lyon is also seen by many as the culinary capital of the country, famed for its hearty meat-based cuisine.
‘Let’s stop putting ideology on our children’s plates,’ Agriculture Minister Julien Denormandie wrote on Twitter.
‘Let’s just give them what they need to grow well. Meat is part of it,’ he said, adding that he had asked the region’s prefect, the state-appointed top local official, to overrule the move.
Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said it was an ‘unacceptable insult’ for French farmers and butchers.
‘We can see that the moralising and elitist policy of the Greens excludes the popular classes. Many children often only get to eat meat at the school canteen.’
Mayor Gregory Doucet defended the decision, saying the idea of having a school dinner menu without meat was to ensure a smooth service at lunchtimes while social distancing measures are in place (file photo)
Doucet hit back on Twitter, saying that the measure has been taken ‘solely’ due to the health crisis and streamlining food distribution without any ulterior motive to promote a specific lifestyle.
He added that his right-wing predecessor mayor Gerard Collomb had taken ‘exactly the same measure’ during the first wave of the pandemic.
He said that the menu – which includes fish and egg products – was ‘balanced for all our schoolchildren’.
Lyon’s municipal education assistant Stéphanie Léger said the menu ‘is the only menu that allows no child to be excluded’.
‘This choice makes it possible to keep a balanced meal and a school catering service accessible to the 29,000 children every day,’ she wrote on Twitter.
Doucet is not the first of the new breed of Green mayors to court controversy.
Last year the new Green mayor of Bordeaux Pierre Hurmic decided to do away with the city’s traditional Christmas tree as part of his pro-environment agenda, saying he was ‘not going to put dead trees in our squares.’
And Doucet himself raised eyebrows by saying the most French of sporting events – the Tour de France – was ‘macho and polluting’ and not welcome back in the city as long as it was not ‘environmentally responsible.’
Source: Read Full Article