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First Minister says £2 million will be given to food banks in event of no-deal Brexit

First Minister confirms investment in food banks across Wales in the event of a no-deal Brexit. Credit: PA

Two million pounds is going to be invested in sustaining food banks across Wales in the event of a no-deal Brexit, the First Minister has said.

Giving evidence to the Senedd's External Affairs and Additional Legislation Committee, Mr Drakeford said "We're going to be putting £2m of [EU funds] into sustaining food banks in Wales because of the impact that we think a No-Deal Brexit will have on family incomes and people's ability to manage."

A spokesperson from The Trussell Trust said they are concerned that any form of Brexit "risks increasing the cost of food and essentials, and therefore increasing the need for food banks."

They said they are giving Brexit guidance to food banks - but there is a limit to how much they can prepare for and mitigate its consequences.

We cannot and should not rely on support driven by volunteers and food donations to pick up the pieces, particularly in the event of no-deal. To anchor people from poverty as Brexit unfolds, our Government must ensure additional protections such as a dedicated hardship fund are in place throughout, restore the value of benefits to deal with a potential cost of living increase alongside ending the five-week wait for Universal Credit payment.

– The Trussell Trust
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Three-day emergency food parcels given out in Wales (2018-2019) (The Trussell Trust)
First Minister also voiced concerns about how Wales would deal with a no deal Brexit. Credit: PA

The First Minister, who appeared alongside officials to answer questions about preparations for Brexit, also voiced concerns about how Wales would make up for any loss in the current £700m of EU funds it receives.

If Wales were to lose out on £700m that would be an enormous risk and it would fly in the face of what people were told in the referendum that Wales would not be a penny worse off for leaving the EU." He added: "£700m is a lot of pennies.

– Mark Drakeford