NHS food banks have opened for staff in Leicestershire

The University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust (UHL) has set up food banks in hospitals across the city to support NHS workers struggling with the cost-of-living crisis.

Hospital staff will now have access to food, toiletries and supermarket vouchers from these banks which will be located in hospital restaurant zones and chapels. 

Reported by Leicestershire Live, 29% of NHS workers in Leicester are currently on Agenda for Change Band 1-3 contracts which means they earn between £20k and £23k per year.

According to NHS providers, 68% of trusts are seeing a ‘significant or severe impact’ from staff leaving for better paid jobs in shops and hospitality.

Currently, the Royal College of Nursing are balloting all of its UK members to strike over low pay and are expecting results next month.

Some district and community nursing staff have told the RCN they are having to pay £100 more on petrol every month to get to work and complete home visits, which they cannot afford. 

Clare Teeney, Chief People Officer at University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust said: ‘As NHS leaders, I think we have a moral responsibility to support our colleagues through this challenging period.

‘At UHL, we are offering support around the costs of food, transport, energy for people who need it and considering how else we can support colleagues on the lowest pay.’

As well as creating food banks, the UHL trust have introduced various support packages for workers located in the East Midlands City. Benefits include allowing NHS workers to eat at a discounted price in canteens, children or staff eating for just £1 in hospital restaurants, free facilities to wash and dry clothes on site and free staff travel on hospital buses. 

The food banks will remain in operation throughout the winter months.

Photo by Joel Muniz


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