Concern for Big Issue sellers through lockdown

Fears for Big Issue sellers who cannot sell the magazine through lockdown
Fears for Big Issue vendors who cannot sell the magazine during lockdown, but do not qualify for furlough Credit: ITV News

Big Issue say their vendors are facing particularly hard times as they try to make ends meet through this second lockdown.

Vendors are not allowed to sell the magazine through lockdown, but cannot get Government assistance.

The 350 people who sell Big Issue North are self-employed, buying magazines for £1.50 before selling them on the streets of the north for £3. This means that they are not eligible for furlough, as they cannot work from home.

The Director of Big Issue North says vendors are facing a real challenge and need help

The lead-up to Christmas is usually vendors' most lucrative time of year, with calendars to sell and more people out and about doing their Christmas shopping. This year, however, without any way to work and with winter drawing in, it is set to be very difficult.

During the first lockdown Big Issue paid out £500 each day to support vendors' cost of living, from rent and bills for those in their own accommodation, to essential shopping and transport. This time they expect to pay out even more due to the influx of new vendors when the first lockdown was lifted.

Big Issue is asking the public for their help...

  • make a donation to the hardship fund, providing everything vendors need to survive the weeks ahead

  • continue to buy the magazine, either in Sainsbury's, Co-Op, McColl's or Booths, or online at Half the cost of each magazine will go directly to our hardship fund.