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Reform Magazine | November 29, 2023

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Niall Cooper: Food for all

Niall Cooper: Food for all

niall_cooperOne of the most shameful issues facing us as a nation – food poverty

“When you only have £19 for food each week, you end up with the crap stuff.” What will you be eating this Christmas? Will you be sitting down to turkey and all the trimmings (or a suitable vegetarian alternative)? What of those families who struggle to put food on the plates of themselves and their children on a regular basis?

Do you believe passionately that no one in the UK should go hungry? Do you think that the government could do more to tackle food poverty? Do you want to be part of building a food justice movement in the UK?

Alongside our treatment of refugees and our response to climate change, the explosion in food poverty and the huge numbers being forced to turn to foodbanks is one of the most shameful issues facing us as a nation today. How we treat the poorest and most vulnerable members is a litmus test for how we should be judged as a country. Yet, sadly, on this measure we are falling a long way short.

Literally hundreds of thousands of people have had to turn to foodbanks in recent years; emergency food aid cannot be a long-term solution. A growing list of organisations has called for a stronger and more coordinated government to take action to reduce food poverty…

Niall Cooper is director of Church Action on Poverty. “Bread Broken for All: A right to food” is the theme for Church Action on Poverty Sunday, which is on 7 February 2016. To download resources, visit


This is an extract from the December 2015/January 2016 edition of Reform.

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