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Food banks

Discussion in 'Personal' started by monicabilongame, Dec 16, 2018.

  1. monicabilongame

    monicabilongame Star commenter

    The number of uses of Trussell Trust food banks has increased since 2010 from 41,000 to 1.2 million, but we don’t know how many individual people use food banks in total. The Trust estimates it had 560,000 users in 2016/17, but this won’t reflect the total number of people using food banks in the UK as these figures are only for Trussell Trust foodbanks. Demand for foodbanks has risen by 52% in places where Universal Credit has been implemented.

    According to an all-party parliamentary report released in December 2014, key reasons for the increased demand for UK foodbanks are delays in paying benefits, welfare sanctions and the recent reversal of the post-WWII trend for poor people's incomes to rise above or in line with increased costs for housing, utility bills and food

    In 2013 the British government blocked a £22 million European Union fund to help finance food banks in the UK. This disappointed Labour MEP, Richard Howitt, who assisted in negotiating the fund. Howitt stated:

    "It is very sad that our government is opposing this much-needed help for foodbanks on the basis that it is a national responsibility, when in reality it has no intention of providing the help itself. The only conclusion is that Conservative anti-European ideology is being put before the needs of the most destitute and deprived in our society."

    What I find incomprehensible is that the whole idea of food banks is now taken for granted and a normal thing, even to the extent that Tory MPs have been using them as a photo opportunity, IDS, Raab and Morgan among them, and that it's somehow now the responsibility of the ordinary man in the street to stock them. How did we ever get to this? There is even a food bank now opened up in a primary school!

  2. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    We volunteer in one locally - trust me they are needed - even in my very affluent home city.

    Yesterday (as every Saturday) we bought a couple of extra items and put them in one of the food bank collection crate in Sainsbury's - we were in at just after 9 am - there wasn't a lot in it. I had to go back later in the afternoon as we forgot something we needed for tea. Both crates were completely full.

    It's called the "Big Society" remember

    Look after your own because we Tories don't give a ****
  3. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    Promoting food banks is a powerful way of stopping people getting angry about the widespread and devastating nature of the poverty that actually exists. Indiscriminate poverty in many ways, it could be you or I. As well as them.
    People wont get angry enough about it if they feel they can help. And so a nation of those who extend benevolence by filling promotional boxes with Smart Price pasta and tinned tomatoes, and nation of those who still yet have no decent roof over their heads.
    Where is the actual knowledge of that in giving to a food bank? How little are we scratching the surface!
    Not angry enough to really protest, because we are doing our own kindness, giving of what we have. We are all good people in this.

    Edit-somebody's going to respond "what on earth do you have against food banks, you complete taker!". But that's not my point; it's the the prominence, look at the opening post, and publicity afforded to food bank based "solutions", the urge to join in and be charitable and support decent fellow humans' lives when...hang on!..who's job is that?
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2018
    MAGAorMIGA, Jamvic, Laphroig and 2 others like this.
  4. monicabilongame

    monicabilongame Star commenter

    It is really the job of us all, at least in my book, but that role is devolved to those in power to do it for us through the taxes we pay. Otherwise the help would be unevenly spread and those in the poorer parts of the country would not benefit as well as those who live in the wealthier parts, and whose local societies can afford to help more. The thing is that it tends to be those who are not well off who are the most generous, and who can afford it least.

    In an ideal world everyone supports everyone else, but in a capitalist world it's all about the profit and everyone for themselves; that way lies inequality and division. I just think that's terribly sad. To have to have so many food banks is shameful enough, but to know that the Tories blocked a fund that could have helped fund these is appalling - particularly in the light of their reasoning being that it was a national responsibility but had no intention of taking on that responsibility.
    sabrinakat, Jamvic and Catgirl1964 like this.
  5. Aquamarina1234

    Aquamarina1234 Star commenter

    Not having a go, totally opposed to UC, but... hang out at "mixed" school, where some customers of food banks, to my own knowledge, are at least contributors to their own hardship.
  6. Dragonlady30

    Dragonlady30 Star commenter

    I've always thought 'there but for the grace of God go I' and the easiest thing in the world to pop one or two items into the shopping trolley. We have a collection point at church but it is heartening to see the large baskets in the supermarkets full of items.
  7. needabreak

    needabreak Star commenter

    Wasn't helping others always the ordinary persons responsibility through taxes or cans in a trolly? As long as people who need it get food does it matter how the emergency help is administered?

    Interesting, I wonder if they were weaning us off the EU or if there were some funding conditions that would require certain behaviours... There's usually a catch isn't there, you don't get something for nothing in this life.
  8. lilachardy

    lilachardy Star commenter

    You know how on ebay, for example, at check-out you can click to add a donation to a charity?

    I'd like to see an option to give money to a food bank at the check out so they can buy what they need rather than the surfeit of whatever's on offer that week.
    ilovesooty, afterdark and needabreak like this.
  9. Aquamarina1234

    Aquamarina1234 Star commenter

    We're back to the distinction between The Deserving Poor and the Undeserving Poor.
    The longer we make taxpayers pretend there is no distinction (other than when it comes to providing for the children; and we might even then need justification for their continued unfunded production), the less clucking charitable they'll become.

    Espesh when things get harder after Brexit.
    monicabilongame likes this.
  10. needabreak

    needabreak Star commenter

    I'm confused, what do you mean? How do you classify the deserving and undeserving?
    Burndenpark and Jamvic like this.
  11. Photo51

    Photo51 Established commenter

    And no other system has lifted so many people out of poverty,
  12. Aquamarina1234

    Aquamarina1234 Star commenter

    Oh really? We live in parallel universes?
    To n.a.b.
  13. needabreak

    needabreak Star commenter

    How do you classify deserving and undeserving poor? Genuine question.
    Jamvic likes this.
  14. Aquamarina1234

    Aquamarina1234 Star commenter

    Everyone has their own definition. That's why we aren't required to present it in Parliament.
    If you as an individual, have brought a child into the world whom neither you, as a parent, nor you, as the child's other parent, can, or choose not, to support, then maybe ask yourselves why it's here.
    Now it's a bit late.
  15. vinnie24

    vinnie24 Lead commenter

    As a kid in the seventies I had never heard of a foodbank because there weren't any as there wasn't a need for them. I could never have imagined that 40 years later there would be record numbers of homeless people and even people working would have to seek charity to feed themselves. I always envisaged some Star Trek like future where hunger is eradicated and there are no more wars. Never would I have thought that people would be economically worse off in the 21st Century than they were in the 20th. Living standards historically always seemed to get better up to that point. But look at the state of things now and this is after 40 year of being in the EU which despite the poverty throughout Europe some people (mostly middle class/wealthy) still think is the best thing since sliced bread.

    People blame the Tories or New Labour but this is happening across Europe and USA as well. It is the system of globalisation/neo-liberalism that is common to all these countries and it needs to be smashed.

    I have my yellow vest ready for when the people of Britain wake up to what is happening. Failure to deliver Brexit will be the final straw methinks and will be the slap across the face needed.

    The French are already rising from their slumbers. Not that the media report much of what is happening across the channel, probably because the yellow vests are demanding out of the EU. Their other demands are fantastic as well. There is very little to argue with any of their demands.

    Hopefully change is coming.
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2018
    afterdark, agathamorse and Jamvic like this.
  16. Photo51

    Photo51 Established commenter

    Migration is a big issue. I was surprised Macron will seek to reduce it. It will take away support from LePen
  17. drvs

    drvs Star commenter

    My school collected for food banks this term. Our donations were rejected by 8 food banks before we eventually found one over 20 miles away that had space for donations. We visited the local Trussell as our first choice and their storage area was no bigger than a teacher's cupboard. Totally inadequate for their needs.

    Perhaps the point is that not everyone who takes support actually need support.
  18. Photo51

    Photo51 Established commenter

    Hard to imagine a time when you got tax reiief on your mortgage interest and insurance premiums. No flight taxes. free dentistry. No university fees and students could claim benefits while living at home doing nothing in the holidays.Working on the lump was easier. You could claim dole without monitoring and the SS paid 100% of your mortgage interest. Where did it all go so wrong?
  19. NoseyMatronType

    NoseyMatronType Star commenter

    It went wrong when the economic policies of Hayek and Friedman rose to ascendancy, gradually increasing levels of inequality everywhere they were applied, and failing to deliver the levels of economic growth that were advertised on the tin (even in comparison with growth levels during the period of stagflation in the 70's).

    From Ha Joon Chang's Economics : A User's Guide:

    'This period [ 1973 -79] is often depicted as one of unmitigated economic disaster by free-market economists, who are critical of the mixed economy model. This is misleading. Growth in the ACC's may have slowed down compared to the Golden Age, but, at 2% per capita, income growth rate during 1973-80 was still much higher than any period up to the Second World War (1.2-1.4%) and slightly higher than what followed in the next three decades of neoliberalism (1.8% for 1980-2010).'

    For the relevant number crunching on the next three and a half decades, see the following:

    Ha Joon Chang 23 Things They Don't Tell You About Capitalism

    David Harvey A Brief History of Neoliberalism

    Manfred B. Steger and Ravi Roy Neoliberalism: A Very Short Introduction

    Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett The Spirit Level: Why Equality is Better For Everyone

    Mark Fisher Capitalist Realism: Is There No Alternative?

    Like yourself, I am a capitalist. But unregulated hypercapitalism has a lot to answer for,
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2018
    sabrinakat, silkywave, Jamvic and 2 others like this.
  20. Photo51

    Photo51 Established commenter

    Had it not been for those policies, university would still be free with grants and the government would pay 100% of mortgage interest during periods of unemployment?

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