Number using food banks triples in a year

The number of people using food banks to make end meet has tripled this year, according to new figures released today by the Trussell Trust.

Cameron Osborne

The number of people using food banks to make ends meet has tripled in a year, according to new figures released today by the Trussell Trust.

355,000 people used foodbanks between April and September 2013, compared to 113,000 between April and September 2012, according to the Trust, which runs 400 food banks across the UK.

A third of those being helped were children and a third required food following a delay in the payment of their benefits.

“The level of food poverty in the UK is not acceptable,” said the Trust’s executive chairman Chris Mould.

“It’s scandalous, and it is causing deep distress to thousands of people,” he added

TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said that welfare reforms were pushing households into food poverty.

“One only has to look at the huge rise in foodbanks to see how little support is being given to people who fall on hard times. But instead of recognising the tremendous difficulties people are facing, ministers are blaming them for their plight.”

The government blamed the increase on a greater number of foodbanks.

However the Trussell Trust said that food poverty in the UK was getting worse.

“We’re talking about mums not eating for days because they’ve been sanctioned for seemingly illogical reasons,” said Mr Mould.

“Or people leaving hospital after a major operation to find that their benefits have been stopped or delayed.”

Food banks have risen dramatically under the coalition. 346,992 people received a minimum of three days emergency food from Trussell Trust food banks in 2012-13, compared to 128,697 in 2011-12 and 40,898 when Labour left office in 2010.

Food banks graph 2013

14 Responses to “Number using food banks triples in a year”

  1. Sparky

    Perhaps more people are using food banks because more people know about them. And so the Trussell Trust then raises more funds. And then more food banks are then created. And then more people use them. And the increase in use is reported, and more people know about them. The exponential rise you see on the graph is not necessarily due to an exponential rise in poverty.

  2. Sparky

    Perhaps more people are using food banks because more people know about them. And so the Trussell Trust then raises more funds. And then more food banks are then created. And then more people use them. And the increase in use is reported, and more people know about them. The exponential rise you see on the graph is not necessarily due to an exponential rise in poverty.

  3. Fi Archer

    No, you’ve got that the wrong way around.
    You can’t just turn up at a food bank without proof of need – you have to have some sort of official referral; I’m not sure who exactly can make these referrals, but my understanding is that it could be a GP, social worker, council benefits officer, sometimes even the DWP themselves.

  4. Kevin Leonard

    your reply leads me to believe you are godsend for this coalition of incompetence as you absorb every dribble of propaganda put out by them to try and cover up the facts.

    We are not under “Austerity measures” we are in the midst of a robbery as this government led by the ideology of the Tory right is determined to take away every last hope of the poor sick and disabled to the right to a sustainable life whilst they hand over every last penny of the tax payers money and assets to their mates in the private sector and more importantly the banks.

    They are dismantling the welfare state piece by piece and calmly blaming the poor sick and disabled for it. They sicken me to the core likewise those who seek to defend them.

  5. Kevin Leonard

    your reply leads me to believe you are godsend for this coalition of incompetence as you absorb every dribble of propaganda put out by them to try and cover up the facts.

    We are not under “Austerity measures” we are in the midst of a robbery as this government led by the ideology of the Tory right is determined to take away every last hope of the poor sick and disabled to the right to a sustainable life whilst they hand over every last penny of the tax payers money and assets to their mates in the private sector and more importantly the banks.

    They are dismantling the welfare state piece by piece and calmly blaming the poor sick and disabled for it. They sicken me to the core likewise those who seek to defend them.

  6. Sparky

    Note the difference in tone between our respective responses. Mine is calm and reasoned, simply raising an alternative hypothesis for the statistics. Your’s is shrill, emotional and dogmatic, neither addressing the points I raised nor adding anything to the debate.

  7. Sparky

    Just about all those people will issue vouchers if asked. I could go down to my local CAB this morning and come back with a voucher. They don’t ask for bank statements and proof of income. It’s not a screening process.

  8. asteya

    You call it calm. I call it twisting the information to fit a very narrow ideological view, you could call it delusional. And now adding a faux calm and patronising tone in the hope of coming across as superior!!
    It is okay to be angry when propoganda is being used to demonise people.

  9. asteya

    Try it and see!
    Also you only get theree vouchers a year. So its not realy a calm alternative interpretation you are offering is it sparky?
    – despite your comments above. it more like you are determined to believe that for a section of society their sole ambition is to be in reciept of a few bags of white sliced bread, corned beef and tins of tomatoes a few times a year!

  10. Alec

    No, I call it calm as well. The first rule of argument is to assume the best possible motives in your opposite number until shown otherwise. Unless you can show that Sparky doesn’t believe claimants at foodbanks are needy and that it arises from an underlying societal problem separate (hint, you can’t unless there’s a back-story which neither you nor Kevin Leonard have referred to, leading me to conclude you can’t) I’d suggest remaining with the entirely unremarkable and inoffensive observation that potential claimants are far more likely to seek a service which they actually know about.

    ~alec

  11. Alec

    James, you used that graphic before attracting critical appraisal from commenters hardly antagonistic towards foodbanks.

    Looking closer we can see that figures from Gordon Brown’s misrule are included. Use of one provider’s foodbanks (hardly the only one in the country) may have tripled over the past year under the Coalition Government, but it was from an already large base. Taking this graphic on face value, however, consistency would require to concede that it went up more than 15 times under Labour from a small base level when publicity was minimal (and, as is commonly accepted, economic effects of one Government generally last unopposed one or two or more years into the next, 20 or 30 or more time).

    I am emphatically not saying that the existence of foodbanks are distressing, but you’re setting yourself up for a falsification of your argument with this plainly biased presentation.

    ~alec

  12. Snook Berry

    I can’t actually here his tone, do you use food banks ?

  13. Snook Berry

    did you mean, aren’t distressing ?

  14. Alec

    You mean “hear”, I think.

    As for the second bit, do you? Does the OP author? What difference does it make?

    ~alec

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