3 Million Starving In The UK !!!
MORE than three million Britons are malnourished or risking their health because they do not have enough to eat, new research shows.
The study by Bapen, the British Association for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition, to be released in the New Year, highlights the growing link between the recession and food poverty.
The Sunday Express spoke to parents going without food for days at a time so they can feed children. Many are choosing between heating or buying food and some fear their youngsters will be taken into care because they cannot afford to feed them properly.
We also found people walking up to 10 miles a day to their nearest food bank and a pensioner who gave up work to look after her sick father and went without food for nearly a week before getting help from the food bank.
I go at least four days a week without food and my husband goes hungry so we can feed the children
Mrs Robins, a former care company manager, was made redundant while on maternity leave. Matthew, a landscape gardener, also lost his job. They have found new jobs but at much lower pay.
Mrs Robins mostly works at night. Her wages of £7.40 an hour do not cover childcare costs of £8. “We cannot afford heating,” she says. “I go at least four days a week without food and my husband goes hungry so we can feed the children as any parent would.
She has lost more than a stone in the past eight weeks and uses a food bank charity. “We cannot afford to buy the children fresh fruit and vegetables,” she said. The lack of food is affecting her health. Recently she collapsed at a children’s centre and had to be hospitalised. She also suffers recurrent infections.
Michael Booth, 37, has a neurological problem that affects his balance and his partner Xanthie McCutcheon, 33, is partially paralysed due to a stroke.
The couple, from Barnsley, Yorkshire, who have a 15-year-old son, live “hand to mouth”. Mr Booth said: “My son is a big lad, but he’s losing weight.”
Benefit delays and low wages are major factors driving the need for food banks. Mark Ward, project manager at the Trussell Trust, said: “Many people think that if you are hungry in the UK, then you must be homeless. Only a small proportion of our clients are homeless. Most are working families.”
Bapen is campaigning for the government to take action against malnutrition. For more information visit: http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/34303