Wednesday, March 27, 2019

The Food Bank Crisis

The number of crisis food parcels being distributed in Scotland is almost double previous estimates, with campaigners predicting a similar increase across the rest of the UK.

Between April 2017 and September 2018, 84 independent food banks across Scotland distributed 221,977 emergency food packages.

Added to existing data from the Trussell Trust, the UK’s largest food bank charity, which works out of 137 food banks in Scotland, the newly-combined figures reveal nearly half a million, at least 480,583, food parcels were distributed by the Trussell Trust and independent food banks during the 18-month period.

Sabine Goodwin, of the Independent Food Aid Network (Ifan), said, “The situation is becoming more and more desperate, and it doesn’t take much imagination to see that this is happening in England and Wales, too. We need action that deals with the root causes of food poverty. We need a social security system that is fit for purpose, and wages that are related to the cost of living.”

Research has consistently shown that changes to the UK-wide benefits system, along with zero hours and temporary contracts that contribute to in-work poverty, is a key driver of food bank use.

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