A sign of failure?


This is not designed as a critique of those people who give up their valuable time to support others, but I think it is a sad indictment that the rise in food banks now sweeping Britain is busier than ever one year on (Herald, December 13).

The first anniversary of the Sid Valley Food Bank bears testimony to this with an ever increasing demand on its service.

Given that we are supposedly the seventh richest nation, does the rise in food banks not serve to epitomise how our politicians have in fact failed the British people if we cannot afford to feed our own nation despite our ranking?

Perhaps community groups and churches should join forces and campaign and lobby political parties if changes to the benefits system is responsible for this rising trend.

Do food banks not tacitly make certain government policy somehow publicly acceptable and palatable? Moreover, is the increased spike in the food bank industry not the metaphorical ambulance at the bottom of the cliffs, or worse still providing a solution which should not be needed in the first place?

Whilst everyone’s attention is solely restricted to meeting the outcomes of government policy, our attention is of course diverted from the causal effect and, needless to say, the current trend will never be bucked.

So, rather than food banks morph into future larger scale charities, which is what I will suspect will happen, with all the administrative costs and careerists this entails, I would much prefer to see an effective welfare system which targets those in greatest need and thereby negate the requirement for food banks in the first place. Now that would be an anniversary worthy of celebrating.

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Incidentally, if looking for a future food bank site, perhaps one located outside the Conservative Club could be an option, as at least the cause and effect would then be conjoined at one location.

Mark Taylor Hutchinson

Moorcourt Close, Sidmouth