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Overview

Although the UK is the seventh richest country in the world, it is also deeply unequal, and millions of families across the UK are living below the breadline.

Oxfam and Church Action on Poverty have calculated that 20,247,042 meals were given to people in food poverty in 2013/14 by the three main food aid providers. This is a 54 percent increase on 2012/13.

This joint paper by Oxfam GB, Church Action on Poverty and The Trussell Trust is a follow up to the 2013 research report Walking the Breadline. It shows that a combination of changes to the social security system, including a more punitive sanctions regime, a lack of decent work and rising living costs are contributing significantly to food poverty. More and more people are being forced to turn to food banks to put food on their table.

The paper makes recommendations for how the social security system could provide the safety net when people need it, supporting people into sustainable work and providing for those unable to work. It also calls for the UK minimum wage to be increased to a living wage by 2020.

Take action on food poverty in the UK at: www.oxfam.org.uk/breadline

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