Lewes Forum thread

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On 7 Dec 2014 at 9:44am Food Banks In Lewes? wrote:
I was amazed to read in the latest Viva Islington that there are 3 food banks in Lewes.
The question is, are they a necessity or just a political football?
I'm of the opinion that the sort of people in the town who would need to use a food bank are the same sort of people who would be to proud to do so. If you fill a room with free food and offer it to people on benefits then of coarse they are going to take it, it would mean that it frees up money in their wallets to spend on other things ( fags, booze, smart phone tariffs, lottery tickets etc )
At the same time it gives the left ( Labour and Greens and those self important Stop The Cuts people ) a powerful tool in their battle against the governments austerity agenda. " How can you say the economy is on the up when there are 3 food banks in Lewes?" You get the idea.
Call me a nasty cynic if you like but when it was discussed down the pub the other night not one person felt that they were a necessity in the town.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 10:10am Metatron wrote:
Boris your a nasty cynic.
what do spend your disposable income on? Do you drink, smoke and have a mobile? As for lottery tickets a small gliimer of a dream of a better life.
You are a bad advert for tories everywhere. I can only hope that your a windup.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 10:10am ducatipete wrote:
What ever your name is you have know idea and you sound like a prick. Viva Islington my arse. There are many people out there who do not fit your discription and have little money for food. Get a life.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 10:15am Mark wrote:
This is argument disappears with one stroll up Cliffe High Street. There are homeless people there every day. People with hats in front of them. This would have been utterly unthinkable before about 1985.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 10:25am Tony Pollybee wrote:
Where were you in the early 80's Mark, the big issue seller in the Cliffe comes down from Croyden to sell. The point wasn't about the homeless, it was people on benefits, the people who use the food banks. Completely agree with you Boris, but don't expect much support on here.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 11:08am Mark wrote:
Erm... Tony, in the mid-80s I was walking up and down Cliffe High Street without seeing homelessness. I see it now and it's not limited to the Big Issue chap. And I haven't missed the point. There is a massive increase in the number of people who are destitute. And putting it all down on it just being "on here" is an an easy way to avoid the issue.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 11:39am Old Bloke wrote:
How many "homeless" are there in Cliffe High Street?
Might be three at most at any one time but one at least appears to be a beggar from abroad who spends most of her day squatting in the alley by Smiths chatting on her mobile phone.
Of course she may only be doing this on the several times a day that I pass by (not every day) so it may be that Mark sees things I do not.
But then he often "sees" things others do not and cannot.
There is not a "massive" increase in the number of people who are destitute.
Might sound very harsh but there's a high percentage of homeless that are on the street because that is where they choose to be. That may be because of many reasons such as addiction but nonetheless it is true.
I say this from the experience of a number of years involved with housing and homelessness and also from that of a partner who spent much of her life trying to deal with it.
Speak tp John Bird and I am sure he will tell you most homeless offered a chance by the Big Issue choose not to take it - but spend their money on drink and drugs.
As for food banks I haven't yet seen a starving person in Lewes much like I don't see any in London. I do see lots of people of low incomes or benefits with children able to spend daily on beer and fags - and wonder if they use food banks.
Two us can eat very well for less than 10 daily and I find it very difficult to believe that even our sh**tty benefitsdsystem would not provide for that.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 11:51am ducatipete wrote:
Who mentioned the homeless. Foodbanks are for people living in a community but who can't afford to buy food as well as paying household bills.Why do certain people assume the worst.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 12:16pm Metatron wrote:
Wow Old Bloke.
I have been in the situation where I lost my job 5 years ago. My wife works part time and I have three children all at Rimgmer school. Now let me tell you the help I received from the govenment was minamal (after a lifetime of paying tax). I could not get free school meals or help with bus fares. The fares of 90 pounds a month was a one and a half weeks dole money. As I have my own house we could not get help with housing or council tax. I had some savings which went to pay my mortgage and council tax for a year in advance.
Now let me tell you we were on our uppers. if a food bank was available we would have been happy to use it. I have since got a new job on a lot less money.
It has taken me 5 years to get myself straight. Your ignorance may not be your fault has you obviously have been fortunate in your life. Perhaps having a little compassion for others less fortunate than you may help.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 1:08pm Fred wrote:
Must agree with last set comments.
Too many people cannot accept that the UK is in a terrible state for so many at the lower end of society, and I mean on the income, prospects side.
Come on be real out there.
Fred the observer.....
On 7 Dec 2014 at 1:36pm Norton Norm wrote:
Well said Pete and others -
On 7 Dec 2014 at 2:46pm Tony Pollybee wrote:
I know this may sound harsh Metatron, but another word for savings is rainy day money. Why should the state be bailing you out when you have money behind you in the shape of savings and the equity in your property. Once all that had been spent then you would have been eligible for more in the way of benefits.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 2:57pm Old Bloke wrote:
@Metatron - I have no doubt your story is quite true but please do not accuse me of either ignorance or the recipient of good fortune. Like most of my generation I worked for everything I have - though I do concede work (though low paid) was very easy to come by in my youth.
Not quite the same now.
Regarding your comments on compassion perhaps you should open your mouth only after gaining some knowledge as I daresay my life's record in trying to hep the needy would stand up very well against yours and perhaps that of most people.
That doesn't stop me from speaking the truth of personal experience.
I am sorry for your problems and I'm sure others have suffered from the same treatment. Seeing as I know nothing of your personal circumstances I cannot comment further.
However I can quote from direct knowledge someone that arrived from abroad (EU) and within a very short time was living quite comfortably on hand outs including accommodation.
As indicated from my first post I'm not over impressed with our benefits systems and the way it is administered - neither do I think anyone should suffer hardship and deprivation be they alone or with a family.
But that doesn't alter the fact there are not hordes of starving people in this country, food banks are often abused by professional scroungers who don't need them and the welfare system suffers from the same abuse - with the unfortunate and unjust spin off that it tends to profit the professional have nothings and penalise those genuinely in need of help that also have a desire to work.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 3:08pm Boris wrote:
Metetron, I work many hours for little money and live hand to mouth. I don't smoke I do confess to buying two pints of Harveys on a Friday evening and my mobile phone cost me 20 from Tescos and I top it up with on average 10 worth of credit a month. We keep our food bill down by eating fresh food and not processed. Having said that you can eat really cheaply by using the likes of Aldi, Iceland etc. I'm not moaning, I'm incredibly happy, I couldn't be happier in fact, I just get on with life enjoying it for what it is.
I fear that food banks contribute to keeping people in so called poverty rather than encouraging them to improve their circumstances.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 3:52pm trooper wrote:
I read all the posts to date, and I am still unable to find the reason for "Food Banks" I am informed that the people who need food banks are vetted very carefully by a combination of local charities and the social services. I have in my neighborhood two families who have three cars per family there are two young persons per family, who work and husbands also in work. These people drink in the same pub as I do and have no problem paying their round.So I ask the Question who vets these people???? because they are there every time the food bank operates, and drive away in their car.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 4:58pm Bishop wrote:
Its part of the plan to cure obesity. you cant have it both ways !!!
On 7 Dec 2014 at 8:10pm Clifford wrote:
How right you are Boris. And another thing, every 50 years or so millions of people suddenly feel like a holiday and unemployment just shoots up. It happened in the 1880s, the 1930s and the 1980s. People are just selfish, aren't they? And then they use words like 'slump' and 'depression' to pretend it's got something to do with the economy. Good job there are sensible people like you around to put us right.
On 7 Dec 2014 at 8:42pm 8 miles from home wrote:
I haven't worked for nearly 5 years now and own my own property. I get by with my payg mobile phone, using mysupermarket to find the best value when food shopping. I stock up on toiletries and household cleaning products when on offer to last me for many months. I also change my gas\electric supplier to find the best deal. My wife works part-time and we qualify for the tax credits and council tax relief which pays for the Sky Sports/Film Package. We've never had it so good!
On 8 Dec 2014 at 8:45am Curate wrote:
I always thought you liked chubby choirboys , Bishop
On 8 Dec 2014 at 1:48pm UKIP Patriot wrote:
There is no poverty in this country only spongers and foriegners on the make.
On 8 Dec 2014 at 5:23pm Annette Curtin-Twitcher wrote:
Food banks are there for people whose benefits have been "sanctioned" or payments disrupted for some other reason (eg delays in getting payment when coming off benefit and going on another, or waiting for their first benefit payment to come through) and have no income, or because some emergency has left them with not enough to live on.
Most food banks require referrals from some other agency which can testify to their need. They not only provide food, but other essentials such as toiletries, nappies etc.
Anyone who thinks there is no need for these should volunteer at one for a few days and see just how needy some people are.
Of course, crisis loans used to be available for such circumstances, but they were abolished a couple years ago. Sadly, the government didn't abolish the crises which led to the need for the loan.
On 9 Dec 2014 at 8:14pm Fairmeadow wrote:
It may be that a few food bank users are on the take, like a few benefit claimants, a few bankers and a few local tradesmen. However, I'm sure most of those I've referred are not. Things happen in life, often to people who have always been comfortable and would (until they happen) have shared the attitudes widely displayed on this forum. Unexpected unemployment, relationship breakdown or illness can affect anyone, and those with the highest incomes, and the highest commitments, are most at risk. People can turn up at a foodbank in a BMW - it just hasn't been repossessed yet, so you may as well use it until it runs out of petrol. How are you going to pay your mortgage on your nice big house from Statutory Sick Pay of 100 per week, when your bank account is emptied by uncancellable direct debits for your gym and that nice holiday you took last year, confident you could easily pay for? People learn, somehow, to cope with chronic poverty. You have to be a genius to cope with sudden loss of prosperity. And there are plenty of hidden homeless in Lewes - outstaying their welcome on friends' sofas, or camped out in a van parked up in a layby or industrial estate or the corner of a farmyard.
On 10 Dec 2014 at 11:16pm skeptical green wrote:
The cynics on here could easily check out their opinions by volunteering for charities that help the poor and making their own assessments. The rhetoric of blaming the poor is very similar to the ideology exposed in the 19th Century by Dickens ( read Gradgrind in Hard Times or the description of the Parish board in Oliver Twist) and by George Orwell in the 20th Century in the Road to Wigan Pier. I pay a lot of tax and whilst I don't resent it supporting the poor I do resent it subsidising the employers of the working poor through the tax credit system.

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