MP for Neath Peter Hain has joined the Trussell Trust in calling on the Prime Minister to launch an official enquiry into food poverty, following the news that food bank use across the UK has tripled within a year.
There are two food banks currently operating in the Neath constituency, one in Neath town and one in Ystalyfera. Both food banks are accessed regularly by local people who have fallen on hard times.
According to Mr Hain, ‘Average household incomes in Neath are low whilst the cost of living, particularly food and fuel prices, continue to rise. The Government meanwhile insists on hitting hard-working people with economic policies such as the Bedroom Tax, pushing even more families into poverty.’
Neath Food Bank can be found at the Orchard Place Baptist Church opposite Victoria Bus Station in Neath and is open Tuesdays and Fridays 2pm-4.00pm. The food bank in Ystalyfera, ran independently by the local charity CATCH (Cwmtawe Action to Combat Hardship), operates out of St David’s Church Hall and is open Wednesdays and Fridays 11am-2pm.
Mr Hain has praised the work of the volunteers who run both food banks, describing them as ‘a crutch for our communities’ who offer support to those who have been left with nowhere else to turn.
Concluding, Mr Hain said, ‘As we approach the winter months, I remain deeply concerned about the most vulnerable in our communities who will be forced to choose between putting food on the table or heating their homes this Christmastime.’