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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Low incomes are fueling further growth in demand for foodbanks

This news post is over 7 years old
 

Foodbanks are serving more than double the amount of people as last year

Low incomes are fuelling increasing demand for foodbanks, new figures reveal.

Figures from foodbank charity the Trussell Trust show the number of people using their foodbanks in Scotland has increased by 124% since last year.

A total of 51,647 people picked up a three-day supply of groceries from the charity between April and September. Of those, 15,424 were for families with children.

Ewan Gurr, the trust’s network manager in Scotland, said low pay is one of the factors driving the demand for food parcels.

“Welfare problems still account for the highest proportion of those using our foodbanks in Scotland," he said.

“However, these figures clearly highlight an emerging trend and that is the alarming increase in financial pressure that individuals and families are feeling across Scotland and the rest of the country.

“The rising cost of food and fuel for those on static incomes and minimal employment opportunities for those both in work and out of work is forcing many families to deal with the horror of hidden hunger.”

These figures clearly highlight an emerging trend - and that is the alarming increase in financial pressure

Figures show 28% of people were referred to a foodbank due to benefit delays while 18% had been left struggling because of welfare changes.

Another 18% of those supported during April and September were referred because of low income. Last year, the figure was 13%.

The trust has 48 centres in Scotland and predicts the number of people coming to them will rise over the festive period and many will be open on Christmas Day.

A spokeswoman for the Scottish Government said: “It is unacceptable that anyone should experience food poverty in a country as wealthy as Scotland.

“This report from the Trussell Trust confirms that problems accessing benefit payments and stagnating low incomes are having a detrimental impact on people.

“This is just one reason why we believe Scotland needs far greater control over the economy and welfare provision.

“In the meantime, the Scottish Government is investing over £1million through the Emergency Food Action Plan.”

 

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