A Renfrewshire MSP has praised the work of the Renfrewshire Citizens Advice Bureau [CAB] during a visit to their new offices on Glasgow Road, Paisley.

Neil Bibby, MSP for West Scotland, learned that they are leading the way on tackling food poverty in the local area with their new approach to providing support and advice to people in need.

Those who are prepared to engage with Renfrewshire CAB to resolve their issue can get access to food parcels which are given to the client during their appointment. This action comes after reports that Renfrewshire has the third busiest foodbank in Scotland.

Renfrewshire CAB continue to provide clients with food parcels until benefits and support disputes are sorted with their help. By working with clients to resolve benefit issues within one or two appointments, CAB say their statistics show this has reduced foodbank dependency in the area.

Kay Taylor, Manager and Director of Renfrewshire CAB said: “This new approach enables us to assist clients in resolving their benefits issues or disputes whilst at the same time providing support through the form of food parcels.

“All we ask in return for our support is that clients engage with CAB to resolve their benefits issues and we have found that most clients are happy to do so.

“We are the only organisation in Renfrewshire to take this alternative approach.”

Neil Bibby said: “This is an important initiative being taken forward by Citizens Advice Bureau here in Renfrewshire and it was great to hear about it when I visited their new office on Glasgow Road in Paisley.

“I commend the work that Renfrewshire CAB have been doing to tackle poverty in the community through providing food parcels to those who engage with them during their appointment.

“It is however a disgrace that in 21st Century Scotland, so many people have to rely on foodbanks and food parcels in the first place.

“The Scottish Government should use their new devolved powers to tackle levels of deprivation in Scotland. More can and should be done to support the work of Renfrewshire CAB and eradicate poverty from our community.”

By Ricky Kelly

Main writer for Renfrewshire News