Tories deliberately refuse to record the effects of their cruelty to the poor – it is surprising that this still shocks people

Food banks distribute food, sanitary products and other vital day-to-day items [Image: Newfrontiers via photopin cc].

For This Writer, the surprising aspect of this story is not that the DWP isn’t bothering to collect data on food bank use, but that luminaries like Peter Stefanovic, tweeting about it, find it “staggering” that they don’t:

Those of us who have been following the bizarre behaviour of the Department for Work and Pensions over the last seven years and more are now well aware of its self-blinding practices.

Look at the way the DWP refuses to check on the progress – or lack of it – of sickness and/or disability benefit claimants who have been thrown off their benefit, beyond a hugely-restrictive two-week period.

We know that many, many people are pushed into early graves, rather than jobs, by this behaviour – This Site has published story after story covering the fates of such people.

But the DWP, despite being aware of the stories, point-blank refuses to compile official figures on outcomes for people who have been denied state support.

It is therefore to be expected that the DWP will not collect information on the number of people who are forced to rely on foodbanks, either because the amount of money they receive from the state is not enough or because they don’t get any cash at all.

Then again, I heard a line in a film last night that the quality of a good reporter is the ability to be continually shocked at appalling behaviour that they should have come to expect. Clearly I’m not a good reporter any more.

But if I’m not a good reporter, the DWP’s performance – as a provider of help to those who need it – is diabolical.

The Tory government has been “turning a blind-eye” to the scale of foodbank use across the UK, the SNP has said – after the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) confirmed that it did not collect any data on the number of people using foodbanks.

The staggering admission was revealed in response to an FOI request from the SNP – who have highlighted the oversight as proof of just how cruel and callous the Tory government is.

The Trussell Trust estimates that 1,182,954 people received three-day emergency food supplies in 2016-17, including 436,938 children, up from 40,898 before the Tories came to power in 2010 – an increase of 2792%.

Figures for the first half of this year show areas with full rollout of Universal Credit have seen a 30% increase in foodbank use compared to the previous year.

Source: Tories ‘turning a blind eye’ to rising foodbank use, says SNP

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1 thought on “Tories deliberately refuse to record the effects of their cruelty to the poor – it is surprising that this still shocks people

  1. Andrew Carter

    Stefanovic seemed to just be copying the text of the article. Having said that, I’m sure he wouldn’t have put it any differently himself.

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