The Student Room Group

People have been stealing in our canteen because free school meal allowance dropped

I wnt to get lunch in my sixth forms canteen today and came across a sign that said this;
“We know who has been stealing!

please do not as we would have you removed from the college.

And inform the police.

We know who you are.”

And I just felt so so so sad. Because our free school meal allowance went from £2.50 to £1.50 and a slice of cake in our canteen is £1.70 and a jacket potato with cheese or butter is £3. So I’m not surprised that people are stealing.

Why on earth are people being led to this, and what is more frustrating is that everyone is so quick to assume that the people stealing are just nasty people who like stealing. Like, we go to the same sixth form and there isn’t a malicious soul here. I am so so frustrated for them because I used to live in extreme poverty myself. It was horrible and I would never ever do it again. When you run out of gas and electric and can’t afford to go get more you’re in a bit of a pickle and you certainly can’t just make a packed lunch because no cooker, no lights, no oven, no fridge.
(edited 3 months ago)
Reply 1
So you don't actually know who is stealing? You're simply assuming that it is because of changes to prices and vouchers?

I have never met anyone who was so poor or desperate that they had to steal. Every thief I have ever met was simply a dishonest person. This is the problem with modern criminology - crime is never the criminal's fault. It's always someone else's fault - "society" or "the government" or "corporations".
Sadly none of that is a solid excuse, it's still stealing from others.

You just can't expect a service providing and likely insured facility to not engage in loss prevention.
Reply 3
Original post by Trinculo
So you don't actually know who is stealing? You're simply assuming that it is because of changes to prices and vouchers?

I have never met anyone who was so poor or desperate that they had to steal. Every thief I have ever met was simply a dishonest person. This is the problem with modern criminology - crime is never the criminal's fault. It's always someone else's fault - "society" or "the government" or "corporations".

Yes I’m obviously aware it’s theft but to ignore the socio-economic situation of the world is ignorant at best to assume that people steal only out of dishonesty. People are desperate. You’ve obviously never been in a situation like this.

Stealing food is in my opinion not that bad. There is only so long you can survive off biscuits and water.
I’ve had to do my homework by candlelight and take cold showers and live in a very very deprived area, when I see people stealing pads and baby formula I turn away. You never know what someone is going through and compassion didn’t kill the cat.
Reply 4
Original post by StriderHort
Sadly none of that is a solid excuse, it's still stealing from others.

You just can't expect a service providing and likely insured facility to not engage in loss prevention.

Of course it’s fair but at the same time I just think it’s so awful that people have to resort to stealing to eat at school.
Especially when we have about £1 million to advertise on busses and enough money to install a costa machine and thousands upon thousands in government grants, and our principal is the CEO and your school is a literal business. To assume that people are inherently evil because they were desperate and hungry is a broad generalisation. Of course on the off chance they did steal for no reason or because they didn’t feel like paying is bad. But the canteen is so expensive and continuing to rise in price while they cut portions.

I just don’t understand why they can’t increase free school meals at least so it can cover a bap.
Original post by Glumdrops
Yes I’m obviously aware it’s theft but to ignore the socio-economic situation of the world is ignorant at best to assume that people steal only out of dishonesty. People are desperate. You’ve obviously never been in a situation like this.

Stealing food is in my opinion not that bad. There is only so long you can survive off biscuits and water.
I’ve had to do my homework by candlelight and take cold showers and live in a very very deprived area, when I see people stealing pads and baby formula I turn away. You never know what someone is going through and compassion didn’t kill the cat.


It may not be just out of dishonesty, but you can't ignore the fundamental crime of taking from others.


I can understand why someone desperate would steal, but it doesn't make it 'not stealing'
Reply 6
Original post by StriderHort
It may not be just out of dishonesty, but you can't ignore the fundamental crime of taking from others.


I can understand why someone desperate would steal, but it doesn't make it 'not stealing'

Yes it’s definitely stealing I never denied that, but nothing is black and white.

I’ve drawn up and proposed some ideas to ensure that things like this never happen again and I’ve arranged a meeting with the CEO of the institution as a whole (a lot of emails later) such as setting up a kitchen where students can cook meals and heat things up if they don’t have access to these types of things at home, or a student led food bank.
(edited 3 months ago)
Reply 7
Original post by StriderHort
It may not be just out of dishonesty, but you can't ignore the fundamental crime of taking from others.


I can understand why someone desperate would steal, but it doesn't make it 'not stealing'

I never said it is not stealing but hopefully if my proposed changes get considered instead of the lining of the shareholder’s pockets, even if someone did steal out of selfishness and not necessity, the changes will mean that nobody will ever ever have to feel the way I felt when I had nothing ever again.
Original post by Glumdrops
I never said it is not stealing but hopefully if my proposed changes get considered instead of the lining of the shareholder’s pockets, even if someone did steal out of selfishness and not necessity, the changes will mean that nobody will ever ever have to feel the way I felt when I had nothing ever again.


All power to you if you're trying to force a change but money for facilities, labour and consumables still has to be found. It's easy to hate on the shareholders but without their shared financing such ventures might simply never get off the ground let alone survive, if you start to curb their profits too hard they'll reinvest elsewhere.
Reply 9
Original post by StriderHort
All power to you if you're trying to force a change but money for facilities, labour and consumables still has to be found. It's easy to hate on the shareholders but without their shared financing such ventures might simply never get off the ground let alone survive, if you start to curb their profits too hard they'll reinvest elsewhere.

I know and it’s so depressing that we have to tread lightly. But I can’t imagine asking for a fridge and a microwave won’t be that desperately damaging! Whoop whoop
Reply 10
Original post by Glumdrops
Yes I’m obviously aware it’s theft but to ignore the socio-economic situation of the world is ignorant at best to assume that people steal only out of dishonesty. People are desperate. You’ve obviously never been in a situation like this.

Stealing food is in my opinion not that bad. There is only so long you can survive off biscuits and water.
I’ve had to do my homework by candlelight and take cold showers and live in a very very deprived area, when I see people stealing pads and baby formula I turn away. You never know what someone is going through and compassion didn’t kill the cat.


Yeah, ok you had me going for a minute there.

You have commonly seen people stealing "pads and baby formula"? You do homework by candlelight?
The government gives schools a set amount per student, something like £2.40, I'm not aware this has been slashed so are the school creaming off the rest? Has no one complained to the school about it? I don't think they can just drop how much students get. If you get no interest from the Head go to the Governors.
Reply 12
Original post by Trinculo
Yeah, ok you had me going for a minute there.

You have commonly seen people stealing "pads and baby formula"? You do homework by candlelight?

Pull the other one. It's got bells on it.

Yea I’ve seen people stealing and begging for essentials frequently. And I don’t say I do that anymore, I have been in a situation in which I have been forced to do homework by candlelight I grew up with not an awful lot but I like to work hard so my loved ones never ever need to go through this ever again. Your lack of empathy is staggering, your world view is so narrow you can’t fathom that poor people exist.

It’s truly fascinating that the only problems you seem to have in life the namby pamby woke of the student room. Get a job or get a hobby? Are you even still in education?
(edited 3 months ago)
Reply 13
Original post by JackSan123
The government gives schools a set amount per student, something like £2.40, I'm not aware this has been slashed so are the school creaming off the rest? Has no one complained to the school about it? I don't think they can just drop how much students get. If you get no interest from the Head go to the Governors.

I managed to get a meeting with the head of catering, and the ceo of my college, it was tough but I am VERY persistent. We have discussed a few ways we can help relieve the situation. However according to the manager of catering “we aren’t legally obligated to give you that £1.50 we do that out of kindness” which I expressed was bothersome because what???
Reply 14
Original post by Trinculo
Literally none of this happened.

Man I can literally show you the poster in my canteen if I must?
Reply 15
Original post by Trinculo
Literally none of this happened.

I fully don’t understand how a person can not believe in poor people.
Original post by Glumdrops
I never said it is not stealing but hopefully if my proposed changes get considered instead of the lining of the shareholder’s pockets, even if someone did steal out of selfishness and not necessity, the changes will mean that nobody will ever ever have to feel the way I felt when I had nothing ever again.

I think you need to be asking your school why they have reduced the FSM amount - that's their decision as it isn't hapening in other schools.

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