Patrick Butler ramps up the hyperbole:
The detailed testimony of UK food poverty, both from those who suffer from it and those who try to alleviate it, still retains the power to startle and dismay.
Take some of the stories uncovered by Samir Jeraj, who researched an investigation into food poverty in the south east of England for Green MEP Keith Taylor published this week.
Oh, gosh, a report compiled for a Green MEP. That one goes to the top of the ‘must read’ pile…
The biggest rises in demand, it found were in wealthy counties like Surrey and Berkshire, where, it seems, the normalisation of food banks as a response to a creaking welfare system continues apace.
Hang on, either it’s a ‘wealthy county’ or it’s ‘dependant on welfare’, surely? It can’t be both, can it?
As the report states:
The places they are opening are no longer just traditionally deprived areas, every major settlement either has or will soon have a food bank if trends continue.
Those ‘trends’ being the expansion of the ‘charity’ sector, I suppose?
According to Lee Hodgson, the manager of the local Citizen’s Advice Bureau, his staff now have to ration the vouchers by deciding which of its hungry and penniless clients are “most deserving” of charity help.
He says: “How do you make that choice? I don’t think anybody should be in that position. That’s how bad it’s got.”
I’ll make it for you, if you like…
The manager of New Forest basics bank, Peter Bassett, points out that people were not just going without food but essential toiletries. Bassett says the price of nappies meant that “he had heard anecdotal evidence of mothers having to choose whether to regularly change babies”.
And once again, we see the progressives falling on anecdotes like starving wolves when it suits them.
And from this near-chaos, the last word must go to John Marshall of Milton Keynes Food Bank, who worries that the UK is hurtling apace down the route disastrously taken two decades ago by the US and Canada, where charity food banks are now part of the welfare mainstream:
If we are all still doing this in 20 years we will have failed. The country will have failed itself.
Right. And I suppose those who can’t support their lifestyle without welfare can’t be said to have failed, can they?