We’re helping The Big Issue sellers get more out of each magazine

You might have already seen the news this morning, but here are full details of the work we’re doing with the Big Issue :point_down:


There isn’t anyone less than 200 miles away from me that are part of the scheme but it’s a great initiative none the less.

Keep up the good work! :+1:

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Every time someone scans the code, they’ll pay £2.50 for the magazine. Behind the scenes, we’ll split the payment down the middle: half will go to The Big Issue, and half to the seller. If you choose to pay more, £1.25 will go to The Big Issue and the rest goes to the vendor.

Based on the screenshot, it doesn’t seem that clear that a split is happneing here :frowning: would be nicer if it was more obvious

Still, it’s a great idea and not needing cash really helps improve things!


Such a great idea!

Trying to work out if this is an April fool or not. Would be bad taste if it is.

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It’s not.

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I like that “read seller bio” bit on the monzo.me link. I wonder if something similar is coming to everyone?

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Well, they posted it after noon :wink:

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5 miles to my local test, may have to take the trip. I assume the first buyer still has to pay cash?

If the original split is still 50/50, I see no reason why you couldn’t scan a copy direct from the Big Issue seller? If the original sale usually nets the seller more, then cash is the way to go.

Edit: Upon thinking about this more, I think the seller would have already bought their supply of mags from Big Issue, so pay cash the first time.


Great scheme that should help some deserving people, but I feel the “shock intro” is horribly out of context and using big numbers recklessly:

" Across the UK, almost 5,000 people are sleeping rough and more than 300,000 are homeless. And this number’s only growing."

Homelessness in the UK isn’t a poverty issue, it’s a drug issue. At least 60% of homeless people have a substance problem, which explains how we live in a country that provides free housing to all, last year spent £175 billion on welfare, excluding pensions, yet homelessness is a growing issue.

While I think this scheme is great, I don’t think it’s responsible to throw out homeless figures in the UK without at least some sort of context.


Not the first time they have done this in recent weeks, and I find it very off-putting.

Very true.

I watched a documentary on this recently and it found that there is plenty of food, clothing, benefits, shelters and housing schemes on offer but sadly most are excluded from getting a roof over their heads because of substance abuse. This is either from their upbringing, poor life decisions prior to becoming homeless or sheer boredom. There was even a couple who had a pet dog that meant they didn’t qualify for accommodation so they chose the dog over this, which is debatable but I digress.

In another plot twist, the documentary found that some people voluntarily remain homeless because they make a decent living out of it. Some were earning £40+ per hour with no bills to pay.

All this being said, tackling the drug problems would be a massive step in helping homeless people get back on their feet but all can’t be tarred with the same brush.


And do you have a source for this figure out of context?

Ultimately the truth is that a significant proportion of that 300,000 - 62% according to a crisis study - are experiencing “Hidden Homelessness” - couch surfing, staying day to day at a mates house, sleeping in their car or whatever. These are people you might not recognise as homeless.

While there may be a growing trend of Rough Sleeping and substance abuse - that only accounts for a small proportion of the homeless population - and there indeed may be many many triggers to it - poverty, mental health, work, relationship breakdown etc - but the fact is studies of rough sleepers show drug addiction issues around 33%, not 60% - so the rest of the population will be much lower.


Not quite sure why you feel the need to ‘add context’ when the Big Issue itself states:

For over 25 years The Big Issue Group has strived to dismantle poverty through creating opportunity…

Indeed, the About page on the Big Issue makes no mention of substance abuse, so whilst it may be a factor in homelessness, it is the Big Issue itself which draws a connection to poverty.


Was this the Ed Stafford doco? I watched one and a half episodes of that, and was surprised at how many people when asked by Ed how they’d got into this situation had “Thumped a policeman” somewhere in there also.

Yeah that’s the one, you need to watch the rest! :open_mouth:

I enjoy those kinds of programs because it breaks any stereotypes that I and others may have formed. I can also empathise a little with the policeman situation because they enforce the stupid law that makes them move homeless people from a nice sheltered place they’ve found when they’re causing no harm and nobody has complained. In that situation the police could have a little compassion and turn a blind eye instead of applying the law to the letter :man_shrugging:

Something that I didn’t realise was how dangerous it is sleeping on the streets too. I just always assumed it was too quiet at that time of night for anything to happen :confused:

Hey! That’s right, the first transaction has to be in cash, but after that it’s all cashless on monzo.me :tada:

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Drugs “Two thirds of homeless people cite drug or alcohol use as a reason for first becoming homeless. Those who use drugs are seven times more likely to be homeless.” [link]
Housing: “Housing problems were much higher among people with opiate problems (31%) and people in treatment for new psychoactive substances (45%).” [link]
Government spending £175 billion [link]

Sadly, it looks to be that the majority of homeless people have a substance issue. I don’t think then the solution is to ignore them, but it’s a complex issue that’s not really doe any justice by simply saying “people are homeless and need help”. We have to be specific about the help e.g. rehab support.


My personal belief is we should be talking about the drug problem in the UK that results in homelessness and poverty, not just talking about poverty as the solutions to both are extremely different. Dismantling poverty could mean several things, some that would not help addicts, whereas if they talked about rehabilitation as one of many solutions to poverty, that would just be more reassuring.