Rotherham food bank use trebled in three years, say council

Food bank supplies generic image
Councillors agreed to put more than £300,000 towards emergency loans and food bank support

Food bank use has trebled in a South Yorkshire town over the past three years, councillors have been told.

A Rotherham Borough Council meeting heard the pandemic and rising cost of living had led to a three-fold rise in the demand for food parcels.

On Monday senior councillors agreed to spend £312,000 over the next three years on crisis loans for struggling residents and supplies for food banks.

Councillor David Sheppard said the scale of food bank use was "shocking".

The authority will also use some of the funding to continue to provide interest-free emergency loans of between £40 and £120 to people.

Mr Sheppard, cabinet member for social inclusion, said: "The cost of living continues to be high, whether this is food or fuel costs.

"But because money coming into households has not increased to match inflation rates, this means some people are having to make the heart-breaking choice between heating and eating.

"No family or individual should be in this position in this day and age, and so we will endeavour to reduce this burden on our residents where we can."

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