Nadia Whittome, MP for Nottingham East, has donated £3,000 to Himmah, a food bank in her constituency, as part of her pledge to take home only £35,000 of her MP’s salary and donate the remainder after tax to local causes.
Her donation comes at a time when MPs’ earnings are under the spotlight, with a quarter of Conservative MPs revealed to have second jobs, earning £4 million a year1 on top of their £82,000 salaries. Ms Whittome is the only MP to commit to taking home just a proportion of her salary each year.
Himmah is a grass-roots community-based initiative tackling poverty, mental wellbeing, racism and social exclusion in Nottingham. In March of this year alone, it provided 857 food parcels for 654 adults and 242 children, and 1261 hot meals with two partner organisations.
Ms Whittome visited Himmah today, meeting staff and volunteers. They discussed demand for food parcels and the impact of the ending of the £20 a week uplift to Universal Credit.
Last month, Ms Whittome donated to the Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Refugee Forum. Her previous donations include a range of organisations supporting marginalised groups such as benefit claimants, sex workers and gig economy workers.
Commenting on her donation, Ms Whittome said:
“There is an epidemic of hunger and poverty in this country. Food bank use has risen year on year for over a decade now.
“Food banks like Himmah shouldn’t need to exist, but they do essential work plugging the holes in a threadbare social safety net. I am proud to share my salary with them.”
Sajid Mohammed, Director of Himmah, said:
“We are delighted that Nadia has donated such a large amount of money to our food poverty projects. She has always been a strong advocate and voice for marginalised and just about managing households in Nottingham.
“With changes to Universal Credit and the ever-rising cost of living, we are seeing more residents using our services and will continue to work with partners and Nadia in trying to build resilience and empower residents.”