The SNP yesterday said the fact that thousands of people across Scotland have to rely on food banks this Christmas is a “depressing indictment” of UK government policies and has called for a moratorium on sanctions over the festive period.
Latest Trussell Trust figures show that the number of food bank referrals in Scotland increased to over 60,000 in April to September 2015, 44 per cent of these as a result of benefit delays and cuts. Giving evidence to the welfare reform committee in June 2014, then-under secretary of state for Scotland David Mundell said there “isn’t any doubt” that some people have been forced to go to food banks “because they have been subject, for example, to sanctions or delays in receiving benefits”.
SNP MSP Joan McAlpine said:“At Christmas the most important part of our day is often sharing food with our families and friends. Unfortunately, for too many families food poverty is not just a thing of Christmas past – thousands of people across Scotland will be relying on emergency food aid over this festive period.”