Minister for Social Destruction Joan Burton is to officially open the Bia Food Initiative Food Bank in Cork tomorrow.
Pursuing a policy of austerity leaves a growing number of hungry people in society. In Britain over half a million people rely on food banks. Tomorrow’s event is to promote the Public Private Partnership of a food bank that sources waste food from partner companies for distribution to the poor.
Funding comes from philanthropeurs (seriously, that’s a word…) like JP McManus but there’s also a honey pot of €24m in EU funding being made available to the Dept. of Social Protection which these new poverty businesses are sniffing around.
The likes of Bia Food Initiative and the other food providers are charitable, often entirely volunteer-run and to be applauded but it is the stinking irony of a minister for Social Protection opening a food bank that gets up many people’s noses. Bia’s mission includes “a business-friendly alternative to wasting good food.”
Supplying end of life food means getting an indemnity against prosecution if the poor get sick. The legislation isn’t there yet as it is in America and Italy (Good Samaritans’ Act).
In the video above, Brother Kevin Crowley of the Capuchin Day Centre speaks about “the new poor”. He means those with the outer appearance of doing well but as one woman tells him, she and her two children live in their car.
Here are the figures for Wednesday this week in the centre:
1,850 grocery parcels distributed 800 breakfasts served 500 dinners served 80 to see the Nurse 40 to see the Doctor 20 to see the Dentist 10 to see the Chiropodist
If you’re in Dublin on Saturday evening there is a fundraising cultural night in Smithfield’s Cobblestone bar for the nearby Capuchin centre.