Chair­man’s apol­ogy Leader says sorry af­ter food poverty tweet

Gloucestershire Echo - - NEWS - » Join the de­bate and stay up to date by fol­low­ing us on Face­book @Gloslive on­line Jes­sica MERCER jes­[email protected]­

THE chair­man of the Cheltenham Civic So­ci­ety has apol­o­gised af­ter he tweeted that food poverty in the UK is ‘just idle­ness.’

An­drew Booton has put out an apol­ogy on Twit­ter af­ter ex­pe­ri­enc­ing a back­lash for his orig­i­nal tweet, which has now been taken down.

His apol­ogy on Twit­ter reads: “I posted a per­sonal tweet on Fri­day evening, which was well intentione­d but in hind­sight I re­gret it was poorly con­sid­ered and badly phrased.

“The tweet has been deleted and I am very sorry for hav­ing triv­i­alised a se­ri­ous is­sue.”

Mr Booton faced crit­i­cism over the week­end af­ter tweet­ing on Fri­day: “Had a Chi­nese this evening. Chicken £2.35. Fresh egg noo­dles on clear­ance 24p. All nat­u­ral in­gre­di­ents sauce 75p. Stir fry veg on clear­ance 55p. 7 mins. To­tal £3.89. Enough for 4 = 97p each. Don’t tell me we have food poverty in

this coun­try. It’s just idle­ness.”

The tweet went vi­ral, gar­ner­ing 812 retweets, 4,483 likes and 4,700 replies, some of which ac­cused Mr Booton of hav­ing a ‘com­plete lack of un­der­stand­ing’ about food poverty.

Chef and ac­tivist Jack Mon­roe re­sponded to the tweet and crit­i­cised Mr Booton’s ‘enor­mous sense of en­ti­tle­ment.’

De­spite the apol­ogy, many have been scep­ti­cal. One said: “Delet­ing it doesn’t stop it be­ing put there. You told peo­ple suf­fer­ing from food poverty they were idle, whilst you smugly ate the food they could af­ford to make some de­luded point on Twit­ter.”

One tweet sug­gested the pos­si­bil­ity of a pos­i­tive out­come emerg­ing from the tweet, say­ing: “Hey An­drew, how about do­ing some­thing pos­i­tive to coun­ter­act the neg­a­tiv­ity you en­forced? Put in some hours at a food bank, start or con­trib­ute to a group that sup­ports peo­ple in poverty, help peo­ple who need it and get some per­spec­tive.”

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