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Lord Freud invited to Wavertree food bank

Very rich welfare minister admits he's never been to one

Published on July 11th 2013.

Lord Freud invited to Wavertree food bank

MP Luciana Berger says she will be inviting Lord Freud to a food bank in Wavertree after it was revealed that he has never visited one. 

It comes as new figures published today show that more people proportionately are being referred to food banks with benefit related problems since the Tory-led Government’s welfare reforms came into effect in April. 

Food Bank Luciana Berger Is Keen To Show Freud Around Luciana Berger says she is
keen to show Freud around
the South Liverpool Foodbank
Lord Freud denied there was a link between the explosion in food bank use and changes to social security in Parliament last week and said food banks are increasing in popularity because people like getting free stuff.

He said: “The provision of food-bank support has grown from provision to 70,000 individuals two years ago to 347,000. All that predates the reforms. As I say, there is no evidence of a causal link. 

“Food from a food bank - the supply - is a free good, and by definition there is an almost infinite demand for a free good.” 

The fact he said this despite not having visited a food bank since he took office was revealed in an answer to a Parliamentary question tabled by Ms Berger, the Labour & Co-operative MP for Liverpool Wavertree. 

In response, Employment Minister Mark Hoban confirmed: “The Minister for Welfare Reform has not visited any food banks since 2010. Food banks are not part of the welfare system.” 

Luciana Berger MP said: “It’s no wonder that Lord Freud is so out of touch about why hundreds of thousands of people are being forced to turn to food banks when he has never even visited one. 

Lord-FreudLord Freud says
people like free stuff
“The Minister needs to wise up. There is a clear link between food bank referrals and benefits problems –particularly delays. Staff and volunteers have told me this during the many visits I have made to food banks. 

"The figures published by the Trussell Trust today confirm that 52pc of the people who have received emergency food aid since April were referred because of social security problems. A third of these were due to delays in receiving benefits.  

“I will be inviting Lord Freud to visit Liverpool Central Food Bank in my constituency – hopefully then he will be informed about the desperate reality his Government’s reforms are inflicting on people up and down the country.”

'It has got so bad I have tried to kill myself three times'

EX-hotel porter Robbie Crawley says the Central Liverpool Foodbank came to his rescue at his darkest hour. 

After losing his job, Robbie, 50, was living in a 30-foot long concrete tunnel next to a sewage farm. "The cold was terrible.

Robbie CrawleyRobbie Crawley"I lit a fire to try to keep myself warm during the night but the wind blew through the tunnel and it was freezing. There were rats all over the place and I saw a fox prowling around. It was a horrible experience."

Eventually, he moved into a friend's flat but, still without a job, he had no option but to claim food from Central Liverpool Foodbank.

"I really appreciate what they do," he says. "I went there because I need food. I don't like to be in the situation I am in. It has got so bad that I have tried to kill myself three times.

"I can't survive on the £100 per fortnight I get in Employment and Support Allowance. It's murder trying to find a job."

Story and image via Central Liverpool Fodbank 

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13 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousJuly 11th 2013.

The State is sending the Poor to the Church! I spoke to some people collecting for a food bank. I got the impression that they would be really pissed off if there was no need for them to do it. They didn't want to comment on the type of policy that made food banks necessary in the first place. In fact they didn't want to speak to me at all. Food banks are an opportunity for Front Line type Christians to live out some kind of missionary fantasy and be home in time for dinner.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousJuly 11th 2013.


AnonymousJuly 12th 2013.

I think they do a wonderful job, I mean, how else will unemployed people with several children, no qualifications, no hope and no motivation find the money for iphones, large flat screen tv's wii's, various ink adornments and ciggies?

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousJuly 12th 2013.

Troll yawn

AnonymousJuly 12th 2013.

The fact that you think these people get those things for free shows just how out of touch you are with those on the other side of the social tracks. They don't walk into Currys and buy them new off the shelf you know, you plonker! But then, if you truly knew anything about the people you are happy to blindly criticise, you would know that already...

AnonymousJuly 12th 2013.

If every MP had to go out an visit a place before commenting on it then the buggers would spend even less time in parliament working for the people than they do at the moment. Visiting a food bank would help broaden fraud's mind but that doesnt make the things he said in the first place wrong.

AnonymousJuly 12th 2013.

If any of them spent a little bit of time living in thereal world with real people prior to entering the glory of politics, they wouldn't need to spend their time visiting foodbanks/keeping in touch with the populace they're supposed to be serving once in office.

AnonymousJuly 12th 2013.

What Freud is doing here is making the classic human assumption that everyone else thinks like him, and is essentially projecting. Maybe he would gladly take advantage of free stuff when it's offered (and already does - think expenses and tax breaks for example) but the rest of us have a special inner quality called integrity which prevents us from taking advantage of such things unless we truly need to.

3 Responses: Reply To This...
John BradleyJuly 12th 2013.

It is the classic assumption and one that anyone with half an education tries not to make. It is also possible though that he doesn't make that assumption but knows the people who vote for him far to well, and is pandering to their bigotry. Not sure which is worse.

AnonymousJuly 12th 2013.

How would you explain the use of "to" when it should be "too"? Less than half an education? Maybe none at all?

John BradleyJuly 12th 2013.

I'd explain it as being a bit like you, a complete and utter irrelevance.

AnonymousJuly 13th 2013.

I simply refuse to get into a battle of wits with an unarmed opponent

1 Response: Reply To This...
John BradleyJuly 13th 2013.

Then don't fight with the person in the mirror.

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