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Available Expert - An alarming number of people are accessing food banks during the pandemic

Monday, November 16, 2020

Queen’s University expert Elaine Power is available to comment on the record number of people accessing food banks. This unprecedented level of food insecurity is highlighted in “Who’s Hungry?” an annual report released Monday by Daily Bread and North York Harvest on food bank usage in the city. At the current rate, there will be more food bank visits in Toronto this year than ever before. 

“I am struck by Hetherington and Noble’s call to action, not to despair but to be angry and to target policymakers to make poverty reduction a centerpiece of economic recovery,” says Dr. Power. Neil Hetherington is Daily Bread’s CEO and Ryan Noble is the CEO of North York Harvest. 

"Even before the pandemic, food banks were only able to serve about 25 per cent of the four million+ Canadians who were food insecure, and they have never been able to move the needle on household food insecurity,” adds Dr. Power. “In other words, all they’ve been able to do is allow some people to be less hungry - not to change the conditions underlying the problem. Food banks are just a band-aid - though there is an argument that they are worse than that, because they comfort the rest of us into thinking the problem is being looked after and distract us from the real problem of poverty.” 

To arrange an interview, please contact communications officer Anne Craig (613-533-2877 or anne.craig@queensu.ca) or Julie Brown  (343-363-2763 or julie.brown@queensu.ca) at Queen’s University News and Media Services Department in Kingston, Ont., Canada. 

Follow Queen’s News and Media Services on Twitter: http://twitter.com/QueensuMedia. 

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