Food bank interest surges with 250% increase in online searches: Labor Analysis

Interest in food bank services has risen dramatically – with online searches for “food banks near me” up 250% since March 2020, Labor Party analysis shows.

Ahead of his speech at the conference party, Jonathan Ashworth, Secretary for Shadow Work and Pensions, visited Liverpool’s Big Help community group, which provides comprehensive services including food, employment and debt support.

During his visit, Mr Ashworth revealed Labour’s analysis of Google trending data showing that searches for ‘food bank near me’ have increased by 250% compared to the first week of March 2020, just before the pandemic.

The research also shows that searches for “energy bill help” have reached their highest level in at least five years.

Mr Ashworth said: “This weekend I visited the Big Help community group in Liverpool who are working hard to help people with the cost of living crisis and even turning their headquarters into a ‘warm bank’ to help people to avoid heating costs this winter.

“Never before have so many families had to queue up at tables asking for alms for charity.

“Energy bills have skyrocketed, food prices have risen and the Tories have cut Universal Credit and pensions heavily.”

He added: “Families and retirees will be appalled that Liz Truss is prioritizing tax cuts for the wealthiest while they continue to struggle to heat their homes or put food on the table.

“Work would ensure a fairer, greener future by freezing energy prices – and we would pay for that with a windfall tax on the profits of the oil and gas giants, not by forcing ordinary taxpayers to foot the bill down the line.” to settle.”

The analysis also shows that seeking urgent help through universal credit has also increased dramatically.

Searches for “apply for universal credit” have increased by more than 50% compared to pre-pandemic levels, and searches for “universal loan prepayment” have more than doubled compared to pre-pandemic levels.

Google Trends data was accessed on September 20th.

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