Norfolk and Suffolk mental health trust sets up foodbank for 'struggling' staff

The trust said the new foodbank was aimed at helping those working in the service who are struggling.  Credit: PA Images

A failing mental health trust has set up a foodbank to help staff in dealing with rising living costs. 

The Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust said it had set up the foodbank "to support staff who may be struggling to afford increasing household costs including food and bills."

However a campaign group, which is calling for the trust to be disbanded after a series of failed Care Quality Commission inspections, said staff should be paid enough money to live on.  

Mark Harrison, from the Campaign to Save Mental Services in Norfolk and Suffolk said: "I'm incredulous that they can't even pay their staff properly.

"The staff who have worked tirelessly through lockdown and the pandemic, can't afford to eat.

“People in mental distress are on the sharp end, they can't feed themselves, but if the people who are paid to help us can't afford to eat then we're in a very sorry state."

With inflation at a 40-year high of 9% and energy prices soaring, more and more people are struggling to make ends meet, say charities.

Last year ITV News reported that increased costs led to some health professionals leaving the NHS.

The trust said the new foodbank was aimed at helping those working in the service who were struggling. 

“As a large employer in Norfolk and Suffolk we are concerned about the impact of the cost-of-living crisis on our staff. We have recently set up a food bank to support staff who may be struggling to afford increasing household costs including food and bills.

“We will keep talking to our staff about how best we can support them and do everything we are able to to help.”