A mother-of-eight has explained that she’s had to use food banks to feed her kids because her benefits were cut.
Marie Buchan, 39, from the West Midlands, says she’s unable to find work after being nicknamed “octo-mum” – and now she’s struggling to afford meals for the family.
The mum claims that her weekly benefits have been cut by £160 a week, which adds up to £8,320 a year, because two of her children are now over 16.
She told Birmingham Live: "I am around £160 per week worse off now.
“It is a struggle and I use food banks just to survive. I basically live on food banks at the moment.
"You have to do what you have to do to survive and I am so grateful that I can turn to them.
“They are a lifesaver for me and so so many other people."
Five years ago, Marie appeared on the Channel 4 show Only Human where she admitted she was “addicted to pregnancy”.
She was also part of the Channel 5 documentary, Benefits Britain: Life On The Dole, where she said she worked 21-hours a day caring for her kids.
Marie was nicknamed “octo-mum” and says her reputation affects her ability to get work.
The mum – who has one son and seven daughters aged from eight to 20 – has even received death threats from online trolls.
She said: "Unfortunately I have been given the nickname octomum and that has stuck. It is definitely holding me back from getting a job."
She added: "I have applied for a number of jobs. Employers seem keen at first but when they realise who I am, I am rejected.
"I fear I will never be able to shake the octomum tag off."
Some haters online call Marie a “s**g” and a “parasite” and say they “hope [she] dies soon.”
Marie said: "Others say I'm a 'scrounger' and I've had threats of men coming to get me and 'teach me a lesson'. It can be hell at times."
She continued: "It has got to stop.
“People don't understand the impact on someone who is in the limelight. I have contacted the police before due to the threats."
Marie has trained to be a mechanic and has a first aid qualification, but still hasn’t found a job. She hopes to teach in schools one day.
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