Food banks ‘stain on national conscience’

Food banks ‘stain on national conscience’
BBC News

The need for food banks is a "stain on our national conscience", according to a new charity report.

The "Below the Breadline" report is published by Oxfam, Church Action on Poverty and the Trussell Trust.

Figures from the Trussell Trust alone showed that 71,428 people in Scotland were given three days emergency food between April 2013 and March 2014.

The figure was up from just over 14,000 the previous year.

The report said changes to the welfare systems, low and stagnant wages and increases in food prices were all contributing to the increase in numbers.

It said last year, the equivalent of more than 20 million meals were given to people across the UK.

Jamie Livingstone, head of Oxfam Scotland, said: "Food banks provide invaluable support for families on the breadline but the fact they are needed in 21st Century Scotland, as across the UK, is a stain on our national conscience."

Ewan Gurr from the Trussell Trust said: "Among the 71,000 people Trussell Trust food banks in Scotland provided emergency food to in 2013/14, 22,387 were children."