The Big Issue 11/1/2021

The Big Issue is one of Britain’s leading news and cultural magazines. Every week’s edition is packed full of original takes on the biggest issues of the day as well as interviews with the most significant figures in politics and entertainment. The Big Issue was founded 1991 to give people experiencing homelessness the opportunity to earn their own income. We continue to support hundreds of vendors across the UK and all proceeds from sales go to help anyone wanting to lift themselves out of poverty.

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13 Issues

in this issue

1 min
out of the ashes

A forest firefighter looks out over São Paulo. The mural was created by Brazilian artist and activist Mundano, who made the paint using 200kg of ash collected from areas of the Amazon and Pantanal – a floodplain at the Brazil-Bolivia-Paraguay border – destroyed by fire. In 2020, due in part to less rainfall, 600,000 individual fires were counted in the southern Amazon. The Pantanal saw more than double the number of fires, scorching an area covering 43,000sq km (17,000sq miles). Many of the fires are started deliberately to clear land for farming. The Amazon – previously a huge carbon sink – is now emitting more CO2 into the atmosphere than it absorbs, at a rate of more than a billion tonnes per year. Situated near the main avenue that runs through the…

11 min
the dispatch

TRENDING The viral Big Issue story that could force the government to abandon its ‘kidnapper’ tactics How can you make a notoriously reticent Whitehall department like the DWP change policy? Alerting tens of thousands of people to one of its more outrageous efforts, as The Big Issue did, can certainly help. Our story revealed job centre staffers have been made to ask Universal Credit claimants to prove their identities by submitting photos of themselves holding their local paper. The demands, common to TV crime drama kidnappings, also require people to send in a photo showing them holding their street sign in their right hand. Yes, specifically their right hand. “Fake”, “photoshop job”, “must be bollocks” came the cries when images of the policies were first shared on Twitter by the Public Interest Law Centre, which…

3 min
editor’s letter

Two friends of mine wrote a great film a couple of years ago called Good Vibrations.It’sfrustrating when friends casually show the world how much more talented they are than you, but I’ve come to forgive them. The film, set in Belfast through the 60s and 70s, charts the life of a man called Terri Hooley. He is one of those people who is famed across their city for being a bit of a hallion but also for embodying the spirit of the place. Hooley’s story is significant as he discovered The Undertones and released Teenage Kicks through his Good Vibrations record label. If you can’t watch the film, and you really should, at the very least search online for the scene when Hooley wanders into the studio to hear the song…

4 min
drink spiking is just the tip of the iceberg for the uk’s misogyny problem

Drink spiking in the UK is on the rise. Reports have doubled in the last three years, according to a recent investigation, and the National Police Chiefs Council has said there were almost 200 confirmed reports of drink spiking in September and October alone this year. A majority of these victims are young women who, for too long, have been expected to be the sole arbiter of their own safety. Girls who are just looking for a night out are told to cover their drinks and not take their eyes off their friends. In the event that someone is spiked, shame is often the first emotion. Many feel they failed in their duty to protect themselves. Girls Night In is a nationwide movement started by university students, a grassroots response to this…

4 min
to end poverty, we need long-term investment

Last week I did a TV programme about the current concerns about inflation, heating, the price of petrol, the ending of the furlough scheme and the cutting of the Universal Credit £20 top-up. Also about the Chancellor of the Exchequer putting up the minimum wage by six per cent. Plus the debate as to whether the NHS is sucking up too much public money, leaving other parts of public expenditure high and dry. I do not enjoy this kind of programme because you have to try to be popular more than thoughtful. You have to say what people in need want to hear. I made the point that we are still in the emergency stage of the pandemic, as we’ve moved only partially into recovery. And that the government needs to carry…

2 min

Get in touch 2nd floor, 43 Bath Street, Glasgow G2 1HW @bigissue /bigissueUK @bigissueuk Test of attitudes Your article ‘Should employers make sure staff get home safe?’ [October 11] sounds a brilliant idea and three cheers for East Dunbartonshire council. But the article states that Sarah Everard and Sabina Nessa were “walking home late at night”. Sarah was kidnapped between nine and 10pm; Sabina is understood to have been attacked at about 8.30pm while on her way to meet a friend. Not what I would call “late at night” in either instance, and they weren’t on the way home from work, so no employer would be responsible for their safety. Sadly, anyone may be attacked at any time of day, though women and girls are most at risk from violent males, and certainly the…