Responding to the news of the government’s winter package announced today after Marcus Rashford’s campaigning, Emma Revie, chief executive of the Trussell Trust said,
“Covid-19 has already led to tens of thousands of new people needing to use a food bank for the first time, so it’s encouraging to see the government build on steps already taken to help prevent more people being locked into poverty this winter. The extension in funding for local councils in England is particularly welcome. Our latest research shows local welfare support can be an effective way of preventing someone hit by an emergency from being plunged into a longer-term crisis.
“We know support from local authorities can make a real difference when someone is hit by the unexpected – but it must work in coordination with a national social security system strong enough to act as a lifeline to any of us struggling to afford the essentials. That’s why it’s crucial that alongside this package, the government commits to locking in the £20 weekly increase to Universal Credit, and makes sure that people currently excluded because their payments come through the old welfare system get this vital boost too.
“This year has shown the unexpected can hit us suddenly, with devastating consequences for people’s lives. But it’s also shown we can make huge changes to the way we live and look after each other. It’s shown that when we come together to push for change, united by our desire for justice and compassion, the government responds. It’s not right that anyone needs to use a food bank, at any time of year, but changes like this show that together, we can build a hunger free future.”