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Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Reports of domestic violence on rise as Barrow residents ‘lash out’

INCIDENTS of domestic violence in families have shot up as they struggle to survive on benefits and low wages.

Barrow foodbank project manager Ann Mills has learned of the misery being caused as men and women on low incomes lash out in anger and frustration. She also warned people will be driven to crime.

Mrs Mills said the demographic of those needing handouts is changing, with an increasing number of low income and big families requesting food rations.

Barrow’s foodbank figures show that from April 2012 to April 2013 there were 0.78 per cent of families suffering from domestic abuse.

Last month alone that had risen to 3.54 per cent in a four week period and they saw 196 families.

Mrs Mills said: “Domestic violence levels are rising. On average we would see two per cent of such issues (across the cases seen) but that is rising weekly and we are referring them to other agencies.

“People are just being pushed over the edge. We wouldn’t normally see such an increase but husbands and wives who wouldn't normally do such a thing are lashing out in frustration. I can’t imagine what it’s like. The demographic is also changing and we are seeing more working and large families needing our services. People are having their benefits sanctioned and it can be stopped for anything from two weeks to three years. People are desperate.”

Mrs Mills said the foodbank receives around 430 referral visits a month. She warned: “Things are not rosy and people will be pushed into committing crime.”

Emergency rations from the foodbank can be claimed by residents who are issued with a voucher from an partner organisation, including Citizens Advice and Age UK.

MP John Woodcock has opened and supported the foodbanks at Abbey Road Baptist Church, Barrow and in Ulverston. He helped to establish the Furness Poverty Commission which recently presented its first report into deprivation in the area.

Mr Woodcock said: “Many of our families and individuals are struggling on or below the breadline in these harsh economic times and the number of people relying on food aid is increasing. At a time when prices are rising and family budgets are tighter than ever, foodbanks have become vital safety nets.

“The volunteers who staff them and the people who contribute to them are doing fantastic work, but it is time the government faced up to our food poverty scandal and did something about it.”

Have your say

Big families requesting food rations? so the career of having children and being paid my taxes to raise them has fallen through? Barrow is riddled with this. Family planning provide free condoms. If you cant support your children then dont have any, Simples

Posted by John on 5 June 2013 at 10:49

a drug addict gets ,rent dole money poll tax .,all payed by hard working tax payers ,then goes to the FOOD bank to get the FREe hand outs, who ar the muggs????????

Posted by pockets on 4 June 2013 at 20:24

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