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More than 30pc increase in number of foodbank visits in Norwich

PUBLISHED: 22:04 18 December 2019 | UPDATED: 22:04 18 December 2019

Norwich City Centre, City Hall  Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

Norwich City Centre, City Hall Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

Archant

The leader of Norwich City Council has put a 32pc increase in the number of people visiting foodbanks in the city down to "shed load" of different factors.

A council report detailing Norwich City Council's performance in line with its key corporate priorities has found there has been a 32pc increase in the number of foodbanks visits during July to September 2019 compared to the same period last year.

Discussing the figures at a cabinet council meeting on Wednesday December 18, Alan Waters, the leader of Norwich City Council said the increase was down to a number of factors.

He said: "There are a number of diverse factors for this; the dysfunctional Universal Credit which keeps spreading its affects as it's rolled out, uncertain working hours, benefit caps.

"There's a whole shed load of things which are the culmination of hostility to people on low incomes.

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"We need a serious change in the philosophy and investment in social infrastructure.

"We're going to need all of our resources to make sure that people, everybody in this country reaches their full potential because we're sadly lacking in those areas.

"Funding social infrastructure is something that has to be addressed and we will always speak up on those issues and we hope the government will too," he said.

The performance report also found the number of people feeling safe and being overall satisfied with their neighbourhood rose from 64pc to 68pc in July to September.

However, the number of people who felt part of their community and who believed their communities pulled together was below 40pc.

The report also looked at other aspects of life in the city, everything from the number of people in the city who have digital skills and feel confident enough to use them to the number of food premises moving from noncompliant to compliant.

Commenting on the performance report as a whole, Mr Waters said: "It's a mixed picture, a variety of performances in some areas, down turns in some areas but others had upturns."

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