Tory MP: Food banks could make people too reliant on handouts

Discussion in 'U.K.' started by Mr. Frankenstein, Oct 4, 2013.

  1. Mr. Frankenstein

    Mr. Frankenstein Sunderland

    Tory MP: Food banks could make people too reliant on handouts

    Emergency food parcels should not be given to people – because they could get too reliant on handouts, a Tory MP has said.

    Paul Maynard, who works for Minister of State Oliver Letwin, said people could start going to food banks out of habit rather than helping themselves.

    :devil: By "helping themselves", does he mean going out shoplifting or some thing ?

    Mr Maynard, Conservative MP for Blackpool North and Cleveleys, was speaking at the food poverty summit held by the M.E.N. and Manchester Food and Drink Festival.

    But charities in Greater Manchester warned they were struggling to cope as a ‘sticking plaster’ on the region’s food poverty crisis – and needed more help from the state.

    Mr Maynard, who has some of the country’s most deprived wards in his own constituency, said: “I value personal responsibility.

    “My main concern for the immediate future is that people have the most money in their pockets as possible.

    “I do not believe that immediate food relief should be the role of the government. We can’t make food banks part of the welfare state.

    :devil: But, er... surely the foodbanks are run by charities ? I dont recall ever hearing of one run by the government.

    “What I don’t want to do is normalise food poverty.

    “In Canada you have people going to food banks every week and it can become a habit. But there is more government can do.

    “We work with supermarkets who push up prices by rejecting funny-shaped fruit and vegetables – I’d like to see them sold cheaply in local shops.

    “It’s not about subverting the markets, it’s about getting supermarkets to think more about what they do.”

    But charities hit back, saying they had been left to face a huge number of people going hungry because of changes to welfare payments.

    Sebastien Serayet, who runs FareShare North West in east Manchester distributing goods to food banks and soup kitchens, said: “With the government coming here (for conference), exacerbating the situation with changes to the benefits system, do you feel it is fair to leave the practical solutions to the charity and community sector?

    “By definition we are under-resourced and can only offer piecemeal coverage compared to what is needed. We can only be a sticking plaster to the problem.”

    Representatives from debt advice charities and food-growing schemes said they feared the bedroom tax had left people too poor to eat – and at the mercy of payday loans companies and illegal money lenders.

    Prof Eileen Fairhurst, from the Greater Manchester Poverty Commission, said: “We need to connect food poverty to poverty in general. You can’t isolate having a full belly from people not having enough money.

    “The consequence of being in poverty is that you have no control over how you spend.

    “You have to make a choice between buying food and paying the bills.”

    Yesterday’s event at the Food and Drink Festival hub in Albert Square follows the M.E.N.’s year-long campaign to raise awareness of the shocking levels of child poverty in our region.

    Forty per cent of children in Manchester currently live below the poverty line – with the Poverty Commission warning 1.6m people across the region are in danger of sliding into severe poverty.

    A collection box for FareShare is in place at Albert Square throughout the festival, with people asked to donate non-perishable food. All the donations will be distributed to food banks, soup kitchens and school breakfast clubs.
  2. Mr. Frankenstein

    Mr. Frankenstein Sunderland

    A personal view of foodbanks and why people use them, from the Unemployment Movement forum...

    After undergoing a 4 week sanction with no hardship, no permanent residence I can tell you right now that I was reliant on food banks for basic survival!

    I have lost 8 pounds in weight, since the sanction was applied, the food banks aren't open 7 day's a week for breakfast,lunch and a evening meal! you take what you are given, the food banks I attended were only open a total of 4 mornings a week, the food I received wasn't enough to keep the tank going all day but I never once complained, I was thankful for every bite whatever I was given.

    This left me with 7 afternoon and evenings and 3 full day's without anything to eat, It took courage to attend the food bank in the first place, once there you ask yourself why you even considered not going, most of the people were in the exact same boat as me, I actually meet some very friendly non judgmental people who shared their story's with me, one of them being an ex Marine who was fighting in Iraq not long ago.

    In the times the food bank wasn't available I scouted major supermarkets and targeted their free testers, Tesco was brilliant, they had free tester bread at the entrance all ready cut, some sort of cherry and seeded loaf it was delicious, the meat and fish counters regularly had testers of a different variety of foods, prawns, bread, prawn crackers etc I would have never of dreamed of eating some of the stuff I had eaten, but when you are that hungry anything tastes good, it was hardly what you would call a kings banquet but desperate times means desperate measures.

    Not only is the food bank a place for food, when you see people who are going through worse scenarios than you are, it gives you the motivation to keep on living, also a nicer place to brush your teeth than a 24/7 toilet.

    Luckily my jsa payments are back on track as of 26/09/13 and I have offered to help busy friends with cleaning their homes, dropping their children of at school, household chores, gardening, small maintenance work etc In return they let me stay in the spare room :side: it's cheaper and more convenient having me around than somebody untrustworthy.

    If it wasn't for the food bank I would be seriously ill in hospital being treated for malnutrition, which would only end up costing the NHS anyway, after such experiences I intend and would advise anybody thinking about doing voluntary work at a food bank to go for it, you wear your heart on your sleeve.

    I had many different views of food banks before actually having to go to one, I take back those views now as without actually having to go for the bear necessity's of life, I feel that nobody can truly judge it.

    EDIT: If you are unfortunate enough to ever have to go there in the future, I would advise you to get their early, as the queues at opening times at manic.
  3. odonII

    odonII O

    I will look into the details of the thrust of this thread later...

    I just wondered if the unemployment movement forum had any advice with regards to looking for work, and do they have any links to finding employment or some form of training?
  4. Mr. Frankenstein

    Mr. Frankenstein Sunderland

    I think what you're looking for is-

    I think you'd probably be more at home there.
  5. Mr. Frankenstein

    Mr. Frankenstein Sunderland

    The following was posted in the comments section at The Void. On the one hand it might sound a bit conspiracy-theoryish... on the other hand, in light of ongoing government hit-the-poor policies, you do have to wonder whether there might be something in it -

    Unfortunately when Beverage ‘gave’ us the Welfare State, it wasn’t really about altruism.

    During the two World Wars of the 20th century, Britain had a terrible problem when conscripting the flower of its youth for cannon fodder. The problem was that a sizeable proportion of young working-class men were tubercular, ailing, malnourished, undersized, and completely unfit for military service.

    The inception of the NHS, improvements in housing, free medicines, vitamins, milk and school dinners, as well as cash benefits, had the agenda of building better soldiers. Girls and women were included because they were potential mothers of soldiers. (All this arose from the same elite obsession with eugenicism that spawned the Hitler Youth and ‘Aryan Supersoldier’ breeding programmes in Germany).

    It was the resultant fit, well nourished coal miners and factory workers who had the energy to mount successful industrial actions in the decades before Thatcher (something their fathers and grandfathers could not have mustered). Marx, Hardie et al. may have started it, but vitamins and high-protein diets did the rest.

    But things have moved on quite a bit since the 1940s with drones, missiles and various remote weaponry, and so millions of disposable squaddies are surplus to requirements.

    And while NeoLibs may want a standing army of unemployed to drive down wages, they do not want one that’s in a position to fight back.

    HENCE THE EUGENICS BASED STRATEGY OF STARVATION (via sanctions and cuts) to break down bodies, paired with the psychological warfare of the Jobcentre and Atos regimes designed to break minds and spirits.

  6. odonII

    odonII O

    Perhaps. So, that other forum doesn't provide any help?
  7. Mr. Frankenstein

    Mr. Frankenstein Sunderland

    Indus Delta is the forum for the people providing the Work Programme and other schemes - they'd be very willing, I'm sure, to provide with any information you require regarding their schemes.

    Unemployment Movement is the forum for the people who've been fucked over (subjectively or objectively) by the Work Programme and other schemes. It provides lots of practical help and support, but of another kind.

    You might find it useful once you've had your first sanction doubt raised by the Work Programme.
  8. odonII

    odonII O

    I understand that. I guess I understand it's not going to help me find employment.
    I just think, as you might have guessed, I think those types of forums should help people gain employment.

    To be fair, I've found employment now. I'm in employment. :)

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