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Greens call for big banks to fund free breakfasts and lunches as SA kids head back to school

30 January 2023

The SA Greens are calling for the State Government to make big banks pay for free school breakfasts and lunches, as SA children head back to classrooms today.

“We’re in the middle of an economic crisis and many families are struggling to put food on the table. Many places around the world provide free school breakfasts and lunches. It’s time for SA to do the same. This would ensure that all children in our state have access to healthy, nutritious meals and are able to realise their full potential in the classroom.”

“While SA families are struggling to cope with soaring interest rates, the big banks are still making record profits. SA Labor should revive their Big Banks levy and use the money raised to provide a free breakfast and lunches program. It’s time for the big banks to actually invest in our community.”

Labor first proposed a levy on major banks in 2017 but abandoned the plan. It has been estimated that a levy like the one proposed by Labor of 0.05% of total liabilities per quarter on the five big banks that are subject to the Commonwealth’s Major Bank levy would raise $340 million every year.

The Greens have estimated that a free breakfasts and lunches program would cost an average of $128 million a year.

Public schools provide lunches in Japan, Norway, France, and some parts of the United States.