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Report shows dramatic rise in people turning to food banks for emergency handouts

Campaigners are claiming parts of the region are in the grip of a hunger crisis as a new report lays bare a dramatic rise in people turning to food banks for emergency handouts.

More than 37,000 people in Yorkshire and Northern Lincolnshire received three days emergency food over the last year - that's almost a three fold increase on the previous 12 months.

All this on the day, that new figures show an extra 3,000 people have lost their jobs in our region over the last three months. We have two reports, first this from James Webster.

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Rise in food bank users is shocking says Leeds West MP

The number of people relying on food banks in the region has more than tripled in the last year.

Figures from the largest food bank provider - the Trussel Trust - show that more 37,000 people in Yorkshire and northern Lincolnshire received three days worth of food from a food bank, compared with just over 10,000 the previous year.

Leeds West MP Rachel Reeves says the reliance on food banks is shocking, as another opens in her constituency:

Health warning after rise in food bank demand

The leader of a food bank charity has warned if the economic situation does not improve, more and more people will suffer adverse health effects.

In Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire, the number of people asking for three days' emergency food supplies from food banks has increased by 260 per cent in one year.

"That 37,403 people in (the region) have received three days' food from a food bank, over triple the numbers helped last year, is shocking in 21st century Britain.

"But perhaps most worrying of all this figure is just the tip of the iceberg of UK food poverty, it doesn't include those helped by other emergency food providers, those living in towns where there is no food bank, people who are too ashamed to seek help or the large number of people who are only just coping by eating less and buying cheap food.

"In the last year we've seen things get worse, rather than better, for many people on low-incomes. It's been extremely tough for a lot of people, with parents not eating properly in order to feed their children and more people than ever experiencing seemingly unfair and harsh benefits sanctions.

"Unless there is determined policy action to ensure that the benefits of national economic recovery reach people on low-incomes we won't see life get better for the poorest anytime soon."

– Chris Mould, The Trussell Trust

Three foodbanks opened in Yorkshire North Lincolnshire in the last year.

260 per cent increase in food bank demand

The number of people who used food banks in Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire has risen dramatically.

In the last 12 months demand has increased by 260 per cent compared with the year before.

From April last year more than 37,000 people in the area region received three days' emergency food from food banks run by the Trussell Trust. The figure was 10,380 in 2012-13.

The charity's called for an increase in the minimum wage and a cap on energy prices for those on low incomes.

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5,000 helped set up their own businesses

More than 5,000 unemployed people in Yorkshire & the Humber have stopped claiming benefits after setting up their own business using Government support.

Press Association

The New Enterprise Allowance (NEA) has created 5,020 new businesses, with Sheffield, Leeds and Doncaster among the top ten local authorities in the country for business starts with 700, 490, and 400 respectively. East Riding saw 380 start-ups, with a further 340 in Bradford, and 300 in Hull.

Since its launch in 2011, as part of the Government’s long-term economic plan to back small businesses and help people into work, the NEA has created 40,240 new businesses across Britain – that’s around 2,000 people every month in the last year helped to get off benefits and set up on their own.

The New Enterprise Allowance offers expert mentoring and financial support to people on Jobseeker’s Allowance, lone parents and people on sickness benefits who want to start up their own business, which Minister for Employment Esther McVey has heralded as creating a new enterprise generation.

Trinity Leeds helps city top national list

A year to the day since it opened, a shopping centre in Leeds has helped put the city top of a national list for new shops.

Press Association

The £350 million Trinity Leeds centre houses 120 brands and has created over 2,000 jobs since it opened.

But today figures showed a million fewer people have shopped there than expected.

Doncaster care workers strike again

Care workers in Doncaster will go on strike today for another 7 days after a breakdown in talks between UNISON, ACAS ( the Government Arbitration and Conciliation Service) and Care UK.

Around 150 UNISON members will take further 7 day strike action over Care UK's threat to slash their pay and conditions. The strike will start from 7 a.m.

UNISON Regional Organiser Jim Bell said: "We are bitterly disappointed that talks to resolve this strike in a fair and sensible way have been thwarted by Care UK who are still proposing to cut take home pay by up to 50 per cent."

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