Greenwich food bank manager tells APPG: No-one at job centre understands the system

Another vital piece describing food banks and their work, from the manage of one. The comment about the secrecy and confusion in the Job Centre regarding the rules, and how these are withheld from the staff, and the losses in documentation are particularly significant. A friend of mine told me that some of the correspondence he has had from the DWP and Job Centre over the years has been a genuinely muddled, incoherent mess, produced by contradictory, ill-thought out, ad hoc legislation. As for the loss of documentation, again the same friend has also experienced this. He reckoned the DWP centre processing his claim had told him they had lost his documents five times. This is all extremely Kafkaesque. Unfortunately, unlike Kafka’s novels, it’s all real.

Ann McGauran

Manager of Greenwich food bank Alan Robinson, who gave evidence to the All Party Parliamentary Committee on Hunger and Food Poverty Manager of Greenwich food bank Alan Robinson, who gave evidence to the All Party Parliamentary Committee on Hunger and Food Poverty

The manager of  the Greenwich food bank Alan Robinson has been particularly busy recently. Not only is food bank use up by a very worrying 500% in Lewisham and Greenwich, but last week he was called to  a Westminster evidence session of  the All Party Parliamentary Group on Hunger and Food Poverty. This APPG  is proactively investigating the underlying causes of hunger, food poverty and the huge increase in demand for food banks across Britain. The group was established by MP for Birkenhead Frank Field, and he is co-chair, alongside the Bishop of Truro Frank Thornton.

The inquiry was launched in April this year at Lambeth Palace, with the aim of posing a series of key questions to each of the political parties in the lead up to the…

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