Crisis point | CPAG

Crisis point

‘Emergency Use Only’, ground-breaking research by CPAG and other NGOs, found the immediate trigger for a foodbank referral is often an unfair sanctions decision or administrative delay or error in the benefits system.

In order to reduce demand for food banks, we need better access to benefit advances and hardship payments, and decent local welfare assistance. Sanctions should be used as a last resort, with a genuine ‘yellow card’ system to ensure inadvertent mistakes don’t lead to families going hungry.

People should have access to advice services so benefit problems are fixed without having to go to a food bank.

Briefings and reports

Living Hand to Mouth

Living Hand to Mouth, by Rebecca O’Connell, Abigail Knight and Julia Brannen, brings the latest research on food poverty together with the voices of children and young people experiencing food poverty first hand.

Living Hand to Mouth

Over four million children in Britain are growing up in poverty, with many at risk of going without nutritious or adequate food. As poverty has risen, families with children are among the hardest hit. Based on the first-hand accounts of 51 children, Living Hand to Mouth by researchers at the Thomas Coram Research Unit, UCL Institute of Education shines a spotlight on what children say about food and how they manage their everyday lives around food.

News

Living Hand to Mouth now free to access

03 September 2019
Thanks to funding from UCL Innovation and Enterprise’s Knowledge Exchange and Innovation Fund, supported by HEIF, Living Hand to Mouth is now available to download and read for free. 

Poverty is ‘making children sick’, say children’s doctors

11 May 2017
Poverty and low income is seriously affecting the health of UK children paediatricians are warning. Our survey with the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) found almost half of paediatricians who reponded say the problem is getting worse. 

Threat to universal free school meals?

22 September 2015
Sign the petition asking the government not to cut universal free school meals for infants.

Blogs

Why food is not the answer to hunger in the UK

05 April 2019
In a week when CPAG has published the brilliant new book Living hand to mouth – children and food in low income families by Rebecca O’Connell, Abigail Knight and Julia Brannen, it might seem strange to suggest that food is not the solution to hunger.

A 'proper meal’? Free school meals in Portugal and England

14 March 2019
If we had not included Portuguese young people in our cross national study of Families and Food in Hard Times*, the inadequacies in the free school meal system in England might not have been quite so obvious.

The problem with good will

10 December 2018
In our Christmas appeal this year we mentioned Helen*, who we met at our food bank project in Tower Hamlets. Our advice helped Helen and her family get the financial support they needed. But we shouldn’t have met Helen in those circumstances.