Mum claims health and safety gone mad as son is banned from filling soup with hot waterBy Becky Barnes
March 20, 2013
A mum claimed health and safety had ‘gone mad’ after her special needs son was told school cooks could not fill his instant soup with hot water.
Hazel Kent was shocked when Oliver, 19, returned from school saying kitchen staff told him they could no longer give him boiling water.
The 43-year-old, who runs Bracknell Market cafe, said she was told the action was taken after a health and safety inspection.
Hazel, from Great Hollands, said: “Have you ever heard anything so ridiculous?
“What has this world come to when a cook can’t even make up an instant soup?
“Oli told me they have to make his soup upstairs. It is just unbelievable.”
The teenager, who has a learning disability, started taking soup sachets to Addington School in Woodley in a bid to lose weight.
Hazel said: “I am not blaming the school and at least the teachers are helping. But it seems health and safety has gone mad.”
A Wokingham Borough Council spokeswoman said concerns were raised after the council’s school meals team performed an audit on its meal’s contractor Caterlink on February 12.
She said: “There was a potential health and safety risk because the student was going to the kitchen and getting hot water and then getting his soup sachet and putting it in.
“Once the school realised this risk they made alternative arrangements – he is not being inconvenienced in any way.
“This is not a policy across schools in Wokingham – it was a potential risk because Addington is a special school so there are more potential hazards.”
Hazel added she was not told Oliver was pouring the water himself. She said: “They told me the kitchen staff weren’t allowed to do it which is why it seemed so stupid.”