ROBIN Swann, the North Antrim Ulster Unionist Party Assembly member and his Party’s Westminster candidate in the area, has urged constituents to “spare a thought for the needy and poverty-stricken this Christmas by donating a few extra items to food banks”.
Assemblyman Swann issued his appeal after figures from The Trussell Trust network revealed that in North Antrim, 1,517 three-day emergency parcels were provided between April and September 2019, which represented a 69% change on the same period for the previous year.
Mr Swann said: “I ask as many constituents as possible, as you start to think about Christmas, that you put a few extra items in your shopping trolley for their local Foodbank.
“There is a collection point for the Ballymena Foodbank in my Constituency Office at 13-15 Queen Street in Ballymena.
“The scale of the increasing role for food banks in our society should not be underestimated. Indeed, across the UK, food banks in The Trussell Trust network distributed 823,145 three-day emergency food supplies to help people between April and September this year.
“If elected, I want to pressurise the next Westminster Government into implementing an anti-poverty strategy where no one needs to rely on a food bank.
“Among the measures I want to see implemented are: ending the five week wait for Universal Credit and investing in local emergency support for people in crisis,” said Assemblyman Swann.
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