Destituition – The real cost of living crisis

6th June 2023

The national picture of food parcel distribution via the Trussell Trust network showed an increase of 37% in the 2022/2023 year compared to the same 2021/2022 period. The network distributed just under three million parcels with a worrying increase of over one million of these parcels being distributed to children.  These statistics continue to reinforce the Trussell Trusts position that our social security system is broken and that until there is government action this increase set to continue. This is causing people to find themselves in destitution, a word that seems so accient to use in this modern world

Over the past few years Trussell Trust has been working alongside other organisations to campaign and lobby government to eradicate the need for foodbanks. One of these organisations is the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF).

Their Going Under and Without: JRF’s cost of living tracker, Winter 2022/23 report provides stark insights in to how those on the lowest incomes are living in destitution. Their findings show that 7.2 million low income households will go without the essentials with those being hungry, cold, without basics such as showers or adequate clothing with 4.7 million being behind on their bills (Joseph Rowntree Foundation, 2023). JRF have calculated that for a person to be able to afford these essentials their income should be £120 a week, with a couple receiving £200 per week.  At present a single person over 25 on Universal Credit receives approximately £92 a week and couples over 25 receive £144 a week.

To get involved in the Trussell Trust campaign please visit

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