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There is a 'strong, dynamic' relationship between people having their benefits stopped and an increase in referral to foodbanks, new research has found.

Strong link between increased benefit sanctions and higher foodbank use Monkey Business Images

Image: Volunteers Collecting Food Donations In 

Researchers from the University of Oxford analysed foodbank data from across 259 local authorities between 2012 and 2015 and found that as the rate of sanctioning increased within local authorities, the rate of foodbank use also increased. Even after accounting for differences between local authorities, the researchers' modelling showed that for every 10 additional sanctions applied in each quarter of the year, on average five more adults would be referred to foodbanks in the area. As sanctioning decreased, foodbank use also decreased, which the report suggests is evidence of a strong link between sanctioning and people not having enough money to meet basic needs. The researchers used foodbank data from the Trussell Trust, the only source of routinely collected surveillance for the past decade.

Read more on the University website (opens new window)