Nick Clegg says benefit claim rules need to be eased to stop hunger

Nick Clegg says benefit claim rules need to be eased to stop hunger
Nick Clegg said benefits sanctions should be ‘eased’ to help stop hunger (Picture: Getty Images)

Nick Clegg called yesterday for a benefits shake-up to prevent families having to turn to food banks – as the Archbishop of Canterbury warned parts of the country are ‘stalked’ by hunger.

The Lib Dem leader said claimants were being left with empty kitchen cupboards when payments were abruptly stopped to punish them for missing appointments or failing to seek work.

He told the BBC’s Andrew Marr show: ‘There is some evidence that people who are subject to benefit sanctions end up using food banks for a temporary period of time.

‘I think that while it is, of course, necessary to have sanctions in the benefit system, I think we should introduce a traffic light system so that some of the sanctions are not imposed quite as overnight as they sometimes are.’

The deputy prime minister’s comments came after archbishop Justin Welby said he was more shocked at seeing hunger in Britain than he had been in African refugee camps.

He said food was being wasted to an ‘astonishing’ degree, as he backed a cross-party report by MPs calling for the elimination of hunger by 2020.

‘We need to make it easier for food companies to give edible surplus food to charities,’ he added.

MORE: Benefits cheat who ‘couldn’t walk’ is caught dancing in zumba class after claiming £30,000 in disability support

Mr Clegg also used his TV appearance yesterday to hit back at chancellor George Osborne, who told the Sunday Times that Lib Dem policies would cause ‘economic chaos’.

The deputy prime minister said it was Tory plans for drastic cuts that posed a threat, asking: ‘How many colleges will be closed, how many primary schools will be closed, how many police will be taken off our streets?’

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8 December 2014 | 9:06 am – Source:


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