Established 2005 Registered Charity No. 1110656

Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760

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Jan-Feb 2021 : CHANGE READ ONLINE

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Pitch perfect

November 01 2020
Keep it clean: Martin McKenzie’s tip is to clean visors using wipes. Martin is a Big Issue vendor in Finsbury Park with hopes to run a mobile cycling business. He’s also a columnist for Big Issue magazine writing about bike fixes. © Pavement Keep it clean: Martin McKenzie’s tip is to clean visors using wipes. Martin is a Big Issue vendor in Finsbury Park with hopes to run a mobile cycling business. He’s also a columnist for Big Issue magazine writing about bike fixes. © Pavement

What’s it like wearing ppe? Big Issue vendors know

“Visors were quite challenging for our vendors in the heat, really sweaty,” says Beth Thomas, Head of Partnerships at the Big Issue. “Now we’ve said use what PPE is comfortable so many vendors stick with the mask.”

Another change is vendors being able to offer their customers cashless payments. “We started the trial in December 2018 and in January 2019 we had 20 vendors across the UK. Now around 420 vendors are able to accept cashless payments,” adds Beth. “Some just needed the card reader, others needed help finding a birth certificate, photo ID, bank account, getting a smart phone and a £20 top up for data allowance.”

Accepting cashless payment is the first phase of the Big Issue’s Financial Digital Inclusion programme. Next step will be helping vendors build their credit rating, so they have access to the same services as their customers and are not having to rely on expensive pay-as-you-go phones. If you’re interested in this kind of life turn around, you’ll need to be a Big Issue vendor.

  • Find out how to make that move in the centre pages of this mag.
    Or check www.bigissue.com/become-a-vendor
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