Shocking figures out from the Trussell Trust show a 272% increase in Foodbank use in the South East since 2011. Nationally a total of more than a million people were given emergency supplies in the year 2014/15.
The total of 99,000 in the South East who received emergency food for 3 days included 37,000 children. Nearly a quarter of people who receive foodbank help are in work. Green Party leader Natalie Bennett says this is further evidence of how inadequate our welfare system is and of the impact low pay has on families.
The figures for the South East:
99,008 (62,008 adults & 37,000 children) were given 3 day emergency food and support in 2014/15
This is up from 26,604 (16,615 adults & 9,989 children) in 2011/12.
The breakdown for the South East (by county) can be found here
The main reasons people use foodbanks include administrative delays in paying benefits, low incomes and benefits cuts. Nearly a quarter of clients are in work.
The Greens' election pledges address the austerity measures that have caused much of this misery and hardship:
- a minimum wage of £10 an hour by 2020
- make sure social security payments cover the basics
- restore the public sector, creating a million jobs that pay at least the minimum wage
- abolish the bedroom tax
- end zero hours contracts