“Today I visited [insert supermarket name here] to donate to the local foodbank.” A variation of this generic message was tweeted by a series of Conservative MPs at the start of December. More often than not they were accompanied by a cheery picture of said MP next to bags of food. Such a PR misfire illustrated more than a tin ear about the realities of foodbanks, especially considering their government has been in power and responsible for austerity policies hitting the poorest hardest. Celebrating the work of volunteers, great; encouraging donations, superb. But shouldn’t MPs in power be focused on creating policy that removes the need for foodbanks in the first place?

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