How can we help you...

Agenda item

Notice of Motion by Councillor Tissera - Foodbanks/Food Poverty


The Committee had before it a notice of motion by Councillor Tissera in the following terms:-


That the Committee:-

(1)      note that many Aberdeen citizens, like citizens from other cities, towns and villages in Scotland are reliant on foodbanks;

(2)      note the good work that is done by many community leaders and volunteers within Aberdeen, who offer foodbank facilities within their communities, thus helping those most in need;

(3)      note that falling incomes and inflation has left many food banks struggling to survive, however, thanks to the prudent financial management of the last Administration the Council achieved an underspend of £1.3m last year and therefore additional funds are available to the Council that hadn’t been anticipated when the budget was set for 2022/23 and has not been allocated as part of the Quarter 1 Financial Performance Report. In addition, over £35m of cashable reserves are retained within the Common Good. All in all, cash is available to help struggling food banks if the political will is there;

(4)      agree that with many citizens being unable to feed their families sufficiently and properly due to the high cost of food and with food banks in the city complaining that they are running out of food to help the most needy and vulnerable in Aberdeen, the time has come for the Council to stop counting the interest on its money and put some of that money into helping the most vulnerable in our city;

(5)      agree therefore to allocate £500,000 from the General Fund 2022/23 contingency budget to be distributed to the various food bank charities within the city to allow them to help protect our most needy and vulnerable citizens;

(6)      agree to delegate authority to the Chief Officer - Early Intervention and Community Empowerment, following consultation with the Chief Officer - Finance, to make appropriate arrangements for the urgent distribution of £500,000 from General Fund contingencies for the mitigation of food poverty across Aberdeen; and

(7)      appoint a Food Champion to focus on this crucial and complex issue in the immediate and longer term for the benefit of all Aberdeen citizens.


Councillor Tissera moved her motion and explained the rationale behind her request. Councillor Tissera’s motion was seconded by Councillor Grant.


Councillor Greig, seconded by the Convener, moved as an amendment:-

that the Committee –

(1)      note that the Operational Delivery Committee on the 31 August 2022 agreed to invest £1m in anti-poverty measures, including food provision, energy cost mitigation and employability support;

(2)      note that the Partnership had identified £100k of savings from Civic and related Budgets within Common Good;

(3)      instruct the Chief Officer – Finance to reduce the Common Good budgets in respect of Civic receptions, gifts and hospitality, Lord Provost travel  and twinning activities by a total of £100k, and approve that this budget of £100k be invested in winter clothing for schoolchildren, and instruct the Chief Officer – Customer Experience to make arrangements for distributing these funds to families eligible for school clothing grants; and

(4)      request that a Service Update be provided to Committee members by the Chief Officer – Customer Experience, advising how this money had been made available.


On a division, there voted:- for the motion (5) – Councillors Blake, Farquhar, Grant, Macdonald and Massey; for the amendment (8) – the Convener and Councillors Al-Samarai, Cooke, Copland, Greig, Hutchison, Nicoll and Radley.


The Committee resolved:-

to approve the amendment.

Supporting documents: