Labour announces it will halve food bank usage within a year: we respond

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Sue Hayman MP, Labour’s Shadow Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Secretary, has announced that the next Labour government will halve food bank usage within its first year of office.

Last week, the Trussell Trust released a new report showing in areas where Universal Credit has been rolled out for at least a year, food banks in the Trussell Trust’s network have seen a 30% increase in demand. In  areas with the new system for at least 18 months this jumps to 40%, and increases again to 48% for food banks in areas with Universal Credit for at least two years.

Emma Revie, chief executive of the Trussell Trust said:

“No one in the UK should need a food bank. We should all have enough money coming in for a decent standard of living, and any sign of our country’s politicians committing to end the need for food banks is welcome.  

“We know we can reach a future where no one needs a food bank – but if we’re to get there, we need our government and political parties on all sides to recognise the poverty that is pushing more and more people to the doors of food banks.

“The evidence from food banks in our network is clear: hunger in the UK is not about food, it’s about not having enough money for essentials. Any approach to end the need for food banks must focus on ensuring our benefits system anchors people from the rising tide of poverty, tackling high costs of living and making sure work pays. The first priority must be to end the five week wait for Universal Credit.”

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Contact:

Contact The Trussell Trust Press Office at 020 3137 3699 or press@trusselltrust.org

Notes to editor

Our new report, #5WeeksTooLong: why we need to end the wait for Universal Credit, can be accessed here.

About the Trussell Trust:

  • We’re here to end the need for food banks in UK.
  • We support a UK-wide network of more than 1,200 food bank centres and together we provide emergency food and support to people locked in poverty, and campaign for change to end the need for food banks in the UK.
  • Our most recent figures for the number of emergency food supplies provided by our network: https://www.trusselltrust.org/news-and-blog/latest-stats
  • You can read more about our work at www.trusselltrust.org