Yesterday during Prime Minister's Questions, David Cameron responded to a question on food banks by claiming that the use of food banks increased "ten times under Labour". When Cameron says this he is factually correct. He is being totally disingenuous, however.
Yesterday during Prime Minister’s Questions, David Cameron responded to a question by claiming that the use of food banks had increased “ten times under Labour“.
When Cameron says this he is factually correct. He is being totally disingenuous, however.
As the chart below shows, the number of people using foodbanks in 2005/06 – five years after the first one opened in Salisbury – had increased “ten times” by the time Labour left office in 2010. By more than ten times, actually; the real figure is closer to a seventeen fold increase.
What David Cameron fails to mention, however, is that whereas under the previous government the number of people using foodbanks gradually climbed over five years, under the coalition this figure has shot up dramatically – to 128,697 last year, an increase of 4,573% on the figures for 2005. (see the Trussell Trust graph below).
In terms of the number of foodbanks (as opposed to the number of people using them), the next graph below shows the rate at which they have increased in the last nine years. I don’t think it requires any further comment from me.
Like this article? Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by making a donation today.