Iain Duncan Smith has finally admitted that the use of food banks is linked to delays in his own department paying benefits — having previously attacked a charity for “scaremongering” when they suggested precisely that.
In amongst the usual IDS lies and bluster, Sunday Politics’ longest ever interview contained this concession to Andrew Neil:
AN: So you don’t agree with the [hunger in Britain] report when it says there would be fewer people having to use food banks if your department paid the claims more quickly?
IDS: Well if we could pay 100% more quickly then I’m certain of that, yes.
AN: Your department has previously denied there was any link between the rise in food banks and the delay in your department paying benefits
IDS: […] Some may be to do with some delays [by the DWP]
So how about an apology to the Trussell Trust, to whom he wrote last year claiming they had “repeatedly sought to link the growth in [their] network to welfare reform”.