Vulnerable people still unable to access food

Coronavirus shopping

The survey by Which?, found that almost half of those shielding in Scotland have been unable to access vital supplies 

2nd July 2020 by Gareth Jones 1 Comment

Significant numbers of vulnerable people are struggling to get essential food supplies, new research has revealed.

The survey by Which?, found that almost half (46%) of situationally vulnerable respondents in Scotland, including older people who require help accessing food, faced challenges getting groceries in the week before they were surveyed.

The poll has prompted Age Scotland to call for urgent action to be taken to help vulnerable communities.

Among shielded customers in Scotland, who were supposed to be guaranteed access to priority online delivery slots, more than a quarter (27%) had problems accessing essential supplies from supermarkets.

Brian Sloan, chief executive of Age Scotland, said: “It’s unacceptable that so many vulnerable older people in Scotland are still finding it difficult to access food more than three months into this crisis.

“We’re joining Which? to call for urgent action from the Scottish Government to ensure that no vulnerable person is left struggling to access basic food supplies.

“As lockdown eases for many of us, we have to remember that in Scotland there are tens of thousands of older people who will be shielding until at least the end of this month. They have to have continued access to priority delivery slots and guarantees that they can get essential groceries when they need them.

“We recognise the work done by supermarkets at the start of the crisis to help customers, but it appears that some of the most vulnerable older people are still not getting the service they so desperately need. We look to the Scottish Government to work with the retailers to come up with a solution as a matter of urgency.”

A Scottish Government spokesman said: “We recognise that the impacts of coronavirus have meant that many individuals, including those at increased risk of severe illness, face increased food insecurity.

“To support individuals to access the food and other essentials they need, we established a national helpline and have provided £15 million of funding for local authorities to extend support for those at risk until the end of September. This is in addition to the £30 million allocated in April and £12.6 million allocated to extend Free School Meal provision over the summer holidays.

“We have committed to continue to provide funded grocery packages for those who need them until the end of July, in line with shielding advice, and have awarded around £4.6 million to support third sector activity on food, including up to £2.1 million for FareShare.”

10th July 2020 by stephen

If you’ve been instructed by the Government to stay home, you can purchase or top up a Co-op Community Shopping Card by calling 0800 029 4592. The card will be posted to you within 2-3 working days and friends, family or volunteers can use this to do your shopping in store. Co-op can also connect you to local volunteers in your area if support is needed to collect and deliver your shopping.