The Archbishop of Canterbury is heading for a row with the Government over calls for a £150 million State-funded system of food banks to help feed the poorest people in Britain.
Shocked by the suffering of those going hungry in the UK, Archbishop Justin Welby wants the Prime Minister, David Cameron, to accept European funds to support food banks and other measures to help those falling through the net as the austerity measures bite.
Writing in the Mail on Sunday, the Archbishop calls for more to be done to help hungry families.
Tomorrow, Archbishop Welby will launch a Parliamentary report that calls for a new public body, Feeding Britain, to be set up and for bigger food banks to distribute more free food and advise people on benefits and home budgets.
The inquiry, set up earlier this year with financial backing from the Archbishop’s charitable trust, has taken evidence on the extent and causes of hunger in Britain, the scope of provision to alleviate it and draws comparisons with other Western countries.
It is headed jointly by Labour MP Frank Field and the Bishop of Truro, Tim Thornton, a passionate supporter of food banks. Archbishop Welby has been involved throughout and according to the Mail on Sunday, the report pays tribute to “the support he has given throughout our inquiry.”
Writing in the newspaper, Archbishop Welby said food was being wasted at “astonishing” levels across the UK and that hunger stalks large parts of the country.
Families were being forced to turn to food banks to make ends meet even when they were in employment.
He admitted it was less serious but still said the plight of a family who turned to a food bank in Britain shocked him more than terrible suffering in Africa because it was so unexpected.
“In one corner of a refugee camp in the Democratic Republic of Congo was a large marquee. Inside were children, all ill. They had been separated from family, friends, those who looked after them. Perhaps, mostly having disabilities, they had been abandoned in the panic of the militia attack that drove them from their homes. Now they were hungry…Read More
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