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Food banks are taking over from the welfare state, warns Gordon Brown
Former Labour PM, writing in the Observer, calls for action as charities increasingly take over role of social security system

Isn’t that excellent? The responsive, local, on the ground community – the little platoon – method is taking over from the Stalinist and centralised state.

Same problem gets solved better and cheaper. We should not like this why?

10 thoughts on “Yippeee!”

  1. The government’s needs to incentivise people and businesses to support the food banks. If only they did it would be job done.

  2. People who get food from food banks tend to be grateful. They get some human contact. The people running the food bank get a good feeling from helping others. The recipients can’t easily swap what they get for drink or drugs. And there isn’t a parasitic group of paid civil servants taking their cut.

  3. Gordon Brown, who raided UK pension schemes in his 1997 budget, uses the resulting poverty to justify still more state control of people’s lives.

  4. A few years ago I did some IT work for a CAB. A significant number of unemployed people turned up, having used all their savings or credit trying to support themselves whilst job-hunting.

    They formerly had worked non-stop their entire lives and naively assumed that they would get another position quickly. Consequently they hadn’t applied for benefits.

    Now skint they tried claiming benefits and were faced with waits of up to seven weeks. They were told about emergency aid and directed to the food banks.

    State incompetence in being useless at dishing out benefits had forced people to use foodbanks. Those who had formerly always paid their dues to the government had to wait. No doubt those who had just arrived didn’t have to wait at all.

    On a positive note, my colleagues told me that most eventually did find work. These people often turned up later seeking help on paying off their debt from their spell of unemployment.

  5. What Sam said.

    I volunteer at a food bank. There is a splendid dichotomy of political views but we are brought together by a willingness to get off our arses once or twice a week and do something, no matter how little, to help.

    We could do with a bit less of the red tape which often gets in the way of common sense but overall the independence from council or governmental jobsworths is satisfactory, for now at least.

  6. “Same problem gets solved better and cheaper. We should not like this why?”

    The problem here in the US is that we are still paying the government and its minions to do the same thing.

  7. Yeah right Gordon – the welfare State is what? some 1/3rd of government spending if we include pensioner entitlements, housing, disability benefits, energy interventions for our own good etc.
    Trussell Trust is a £34m a year organisation. All food banks, appliance banks might sum to 1/1000th of welfare. Round numbers.
    Pheck off Gordon.

  8. As I always say, I’d rather live in a country like the UK, with two or three thousand food banks, than one like Venezuela, with none.

    Quite simply, the more food banks a country has, the better place it is to live in.

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