Tuesday 4 March 2014

Hungry Britain [ Panorama doc]

Food banks are becoming a contentious issue.
Edwina Curry ( former Conservative MP) says they're not the answer.
Perhaps not... but they are feeding people, so they are a solution perhaps, to immediate hunger. A solution to not having enough money for necessities. Like food.

In the documentary below Edwina Curry states that buying food used to be a priority for people,( old fashioned values ) but it's no longer a priority, as they know they can get free food...from the Food Bank.

The increase in the number of food banks (and the number of people dependent on them) in this developed nation of ours in a concern. It's also being reported that many banks have begun to recieve funding from local councils, causing outrage that government welfare policies are helping to create/fuel further poverty yet as a result, are still having to provide funds to support those most affected.

Some say it makes no sense.. that it's a vicious cycle.

The Church's stance is that this situation is immoral. Studies have shown that a country with large disparities in wealth, with increasing wealth inequality, (often linked to gender, ethnicity, social class), will experience greater societal problems, increased crime, lack of trust between individuals, low reciprocity, poorer health, mental, physical and spiritual.. among other things..

Edwina's not all wrong.. but she overlooks the impact of government policies on the lives of citizens, and sticks with the usual formula of cultural pathology.


  1. In Canada we have the same problem. Of course food banks are not the answer. But are we even sure what the question is? This isn't about just feeding people. There are way too many variables to even begin to consider. As the bible says, "the poor will always be among you". And they will. It is not up to us to decide who actually needs the service and those that are just using the service. As a mom that has had to access food banks I can tell you it is not a great treat receiving a bag of food. Though always very much appreciated it was never enough to live on. I still had to go grocery shopping with a list and watch every dollar to make ends meet. I think people assume that food banks provide enough and they simply do not.

  2. '.. are we even sure what the question is..' good point Birdie. They may be a quick fix, but there is a need,
    There was talk of food stamps awhile back ( but that's also contentious)
    Some say increase benefit payments/wages
    But what would one do after paying bills etc only to find there's little or no money for food ?
    Hmmm, I think we may need to change our attitudes to poverty.. away from the 'Tory' Individualist thought and careless.. look at those losers one, to a more realistic humane and compassionate one.
    I guess as a young mum back in the day, I've had the support of a food bank too. But for me , it was the food bank of mums.
    I love my mum.

  3. A thought-provoking post, Dawna. I started providing snacks to a few of my third graders who were poor. Before long, the entire class was lining up for free snacks. I had to stop; I just couldn't afford to provide snacks to kiddos whose parents were better off financially than I was. It was a hard lesson for me!