Serving food in front of a "food bank" facility © Harald Oppitz (KNA)
The Bishop of Hanover, Ralf Meister, has called on those responsible for the Essen food bank not to discriminate according to nationality when providing aid. Otherwise the solidarity breaks.
Neither for government agencies nor for civil society initiatives should the origin of those seeking help play a role, Meister said in a guest article for RedaktionsNetzwerk Deutschland on Saturday."Whoever is in need will be helped. We must not deviate one millimeter from this principle. Otherwise, solidarity – and with it charity – will break down."
Tafel is an "indispensable point of contact"
At the same time, the bishop of the largest Protestant church in Germany criticized politicians for the fact that more and more people are dependent on help from the Tafeln (food banks). The food banks were supposed to be a supplementary service that provided a little more quality of life in times of social hardship, Meister said.
Meanwhile they are however for many "an indispensable approach point, in order not to have to starve. This is the real scandal."In Essen, the political and social imbalance should not now be carried out on the backs of the weakest in the country. "All those responsible are called upon to find a solution."
Admission ban to be lifted again
The Essen Tafel had announced that until further notice it would only accept needy people with German passports as new customers. In justification, the board said the proportion of migrants among the 6.000 people who received regular food had risen to 75 percent. Older people and single parents would be creepily displaced in this way.
The board wants to lift the admission stop again, if the relationship is more balanced. The approximately 930 food banks in Germany collect surplus food that can still be used according to legal regulations and give it to the needy. They have committed themselves to certain principles and a mission statement in the Federal Association Tafel Germany.