How Covid-19 has affected the way we think about benefits

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As part of our Hunger Free Future campaign, we polled 2,000 people to find out how they feel about claiming benefits – and revealed that the pandemic has had a real impact on our views, suggesting that ‘benefits’ no longer carries the negative connotations it once might have done.

More than 40% of people said that before the pandemic, they would have felt – or did feel – embarrassed by the thought of claiming benefits. But with so many of us struggling financially in the wake of Covid-19, with businesses folding, redundances, and workers being furloughed, that perception has shifted. Now, just 35% of people feel that way.

“We have a unique opportunity to challenge the norm. The last 12 months have been hard for everyone – with many finding themselves weaker financially. But perhaps the universal impact of the pandemic has shown how the unexpected can hit any of us, and how much we need change.”

The Trussell Trust

And the poll also showed that more than 70% of people agreed it’s not right that anyone in a country as rich as the UK should need to use a charity for food. It’s time for change. The last year has been challenging – but 38% of people think the nation will be a more compassionate place a year from now. It’s time to harness that sense of care and community that has been so important to all of us throughout the pandemic and create long-term change.

Together, we can create a future where everyone can afford the basics – a more just, more compassionate society, where no one needs to turn to charity to get by.

Want to get involved in our movement for positive change? Join us now.

Or to read more about the poll, check out the London Economicthe Daily Starthe Mirror, or the Sun.