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Only buy the Big Issue from badged sellers

It has come to our notice that some people are using a copy of the Big Issue as a prop for begging.

I would like to make it perfectly clear that these people are not legitimate sellers and we would advise people to avoid them.

The actions of these unscrupulous people is having a serious effect on the genuine sellers who depend on the magazine to help them get by.

All sellers of the Big Issue in Northern Ireland wear a red bib and display a current badge. They abide by a code of conduct, which strictly forbids begging.

People should only buy the magazine from legitimate, badged sellers.

They should not hand over any money until they receive a copy of the magazine.

The Big Issue is there to help people break the cycle of the hand-out culture and welcomes any person who is homeless, or long-term unemployed.

There is nobody making big money selling the Big Issue.

However, the little extra people do earn can and does make a difference.

Standing out in all kinds of weather selling the Big Issue is not easy, but at least it is a positive step towards making life that little bit better.

Surely no one would begrudge that?

SEAN KAVANAGH

Editor, The Big Issue (Ireland)

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