Iain Duncan Smith blames rise of food banks on ‘evangelism’ – pot, kettle, black?

Crocodile tears: Everybody thought Iain Duncan Smith had a change of heart at Easterhouse and intended to help people. Instead, under his direction, the Department for Work and Pensions has caused the deaths of thousands upon thousands of innocent people.

Crocodile tears: Everybody thought Iain Duncan Smith had a change of heart at Easterhouse and intended to help people. Instead, under his direction, the Department for Work and Pensions has caused the deaths of thousands upon thousands of innocent people.

The Department for Work and Pensions reckons that the rise of food banks has more to do with Christian evangelism than with helping people who can’t afford food because of Conservative government policies.

According to Political Scrapbook, DWP director Neil Couling said: “For the Trussell Trust, food banks started as an evangelical device to get religious groups in touch with their local communities.”

How interesting.

Has Mr Couling forgotten Iain Duncan Smith’s ‘Road to Damascus’ moment on the housing estates of Easterhouse and Gallowgates in Glasgow in 2002?

Struck by the run-down housing, visible signs of drug abuse and general lack of hope, Roman Catholic Duncan Smith set out – with evangelical zeal – to do something about it.

He now sits in a government that kicks people out of their run-down houses and turns the lack of hope into abject despair by cutting off the benefits they need to survive (his government has pushed wages even further below the amount necessary for people to be able to live without government assistance than ever before).

As New Statesman columnist Laurie Penny puts it, Duncan Smith pretends to be “on a quasireligious, reforming crusade”, approaching his work with “particular fervour and self-righteous indignation”.

So, really, who do you think is misusing the plight of the very poor as an “evangelical device” for his own “quasireligious” ends?

Couling’s attitude defies belief. He refers to a report from Oxfam – one of Britain’s most highly-respected anti-poverty charities – together with Church Action on Poverty and the Trussell Trust, as “unverified figures from disparate sources”.

Okay, then. How about the DWP supplying us with all the figures it collects, and we’ll do the working-out?

We can start with the deaths of people receiving incapacity benefits.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

Vox Political needs your help!
This independent blog’s only funding comes from readers’ contributions.
Without YOUR help, we cannot keep going.
You can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Alternatively, you can buy Vox Political books!
The second – Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook
The first, Strong Words and Hard Times
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

33 thoughts on “Iain Duncan Smith blames rise of food banks on ‘evangelism’ – pot, kettle, black?

  1. Mr.Angrey

    It is hard to take in, there must be another reason they are carrying out these inhumane acts? Is there an alien being controlling parliament?

  2. A John Coles

    How is it possible for a man to become so deluded & so far removed from the reality of what’s going on around him, then be allowed to head an essential govt Dept. Cameron must remove this ill informed megalomaniac before he adds to the considerable damage he’s already done.How many more people must die because of his own & his dept sheer incompetence now?

    IDS is a dangerous man. He failed in the Tory leadership, he’s failed & hurting many good, honest, decent lives, irreparably now!

    Mr Cameron please wake up, its not anyone else’s fault!

      1. wildswimmerpete

        That idiot Duncan Smith is just a shield to deflect flack from Cameron and his equally moronic “Chancellor”. Of course those shadowy corporate interests that pull Cameron and Osborne’s strings are ultimately responsible.

  3. philipburdekin

    Corporate manslaughter at the very least. Why and how can these people escape being charged by police?

  4. therealthunderchild

    It’s quite frankly embarrassing to all Christians that IDS and DC identify themselves as any denomination.
    This is just another veiled attack on the Trussel Trust by a person clearly ignorant of Jesus’ teachings, and indeed, those of the Holy See.
    IDS is a man in error, and whatever his excuse for that error, it doesn’t lessen it.
    I’m voting for the Jewish bloke, then , maybe, we’ll see a decline in foodbank use, but it will take years, if not decades, thanks to those two faux christians and their cabal of millionaires.

  5. robert fillies

    I won’t add the above comments,other than to say how i agree with Mike’s piece,and the sentiments of the other people whose comments i agree with totally,the man is a hypocrite.

  6. Tony Dean

    Last October, the food bank at Camborne in Cornwall, (which is not Trussell Trust,) handed out food parcels for 19000, (yes nineteen thousand) people in one day.
    Local average pay, £14500 a year, local average private rent £800 a month.
    Whilst the national benefit cap has hit many people in Cornwall, the perfect storm of other benefit cuts/delays have hit hard.

    1. Mike Sivier

      You know what? That doesn’t surprise me. I studied journalism at Pool College (between Camborne and Redruth) so I’m familiar with the area.

  7. Maria

    Erm has anyone told IDS that being a Christian a part of it is about you know giving to the less fortunate and not worshiping money. Maybe nobody told him. Aside from religion, whether they are Christian or not most people want to help their fellow man. And if I had money myself I would give it but I have become a charity case myself

  8. David

    Is this the Oxfam view you refer to? http://policy-practice.oxfam.org.uk/our-work/poverty-in-the-uk They claim “13 million people in the UK do not have enough to live on,” or http://policy-practice.oxfam.org.uk/publications/multiple-cuts-for-the-poorest-families-175-million-of-the-poorest-families-have-315868 ” For a second year in a row, benefits values have increased below prices. At the same time, council tax support and housing benefit have been cut for 1.75 million of the poorest families in the UK.” These look like good figures to me.

    1. Mike Sivier

      I think it’s the first of your quotes – if it came from the ‘Below the Breadline’ report that is referenced right next to it on the web page.

      1. Mike Sivier

        Deuteronomy?
        Then it can’t have been Jesus who said it. He doesn’t turn up until the New Testament (unless you’re counting the incident with Nebuchadnezzar and the furnace).

  9. JK

    I wonder if IDS thinks the same thing about the miracle where Jesus fed the multitude with seven loaves and fishes. Just trying to drum up a bit of business for himself was he?

  10. odon

    So not The Department for Work and Pensions or Ian but Neil?

    Ian: “Food banks do a good service, but they have been much in the news. People know they are free. They know about them and they will ask social workers to refer them. It would be wrong to pretend that the mass of publicity has not also been a driver in their increased use.”

    http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/pa…ees/77641.aspx

    Where does ‘more to do with’ come from? What is that based on?

    How does: ‘For the Trussell Trust, food banks started as an evangelical device to get religious groups in touch with their local communities’ turn into: ‘Iain Duncan Smith blames rise of food banks on ‘evangelism’?

      1. odon

        That does not make sense.
        Come on…
        Even the quote you use doesn’t seem to back up your ascertion: blames rise of food banks on evangelism.
        He seems to be talking about why they started food banks not why they are increasing.
        It just seems to be manipulative/tabloid ‘journalism’
        As for: Department for Work and Pensions has caused the deaths of thousands upon thousands of innocent people.
        Wow…
        If you can’t explain the twisted article, fair enough.

      2. odon

        It is not about nit-picking. You are saying one person is saying something which they seemingly did not. Using a quote inappropriately and seemingly twisting words. You are just not being honest IMHO.

      3. Mike Sivier

        And you are being disingenuous. Neil Couling said the words because it is his job to say them; he is repeating current DWP policy. That policy is dictated by Couling’s boss, Iain Duncan Smith. Therefore he is saying what Iain Duncan Smith wants him to say.
        This is not an argument that depends on me saying two different things are the same; it is an argument that points out the direct relationship between what Iain Duncan Smith wants and what his employees do.

        Or are you saying that Mr Couling went rogue and was spouting off-script comments? That would be a disciplinary offence and we haven’t seen any evidence of such action being taken against him, have we? Of course not.

        I don’t think I’ll be accepting any more comments from you on this issue.

  11. MrChekaMan

    Food banks are here because the government is being really unpleasant towards not just the unemployed but the disabled and the low-paid.

  12. Paul

    Now that the DWP have delayed PIP for those claimants, who have had a lifetime or indefinite DLA awards, until October 2015.That means that we have had 5 years (2010/2015) of mental torture so far, they will be asking old aged pensioners aged 66, 67, and 68 to go for medical assessment’s at that age is all wrong. And it’s all down to IDS

    1. Mike Sivier

      I’ve edited your comment right down again because you still appear not to have grasped the idea that a comment should not be longer than the article that prompted it.

      Also, I have already answered this question, which is based on a false premise. Working people can get food bank vouchers; if you are in hardship, then a referrer will send you to a food bank.

Comments are closed.