You can probably certainly agree that since the pandemic, we are living through the biggest digital shift our country has seen in years. I’m sure you can relate to carrying less cash? Adopting more online shopping? Utilising digital banking and contactless payments?
85% of payments are now made digitally, meaning that Big Issue North vendors are a part of 4.7 million adults in the UK who are currently ‘digitally excluded’ and unable to use technology required to go cashless. Out of this group,1.7 million lack the most basic first requirement - a bank account. This is an enormous obstruction we face with our vendors, and the decline of cash threatens to leave vendors in an even more vulnerable situation. Urgent attention needs to be given to vendors already struggling to survive, and having less cash in circulation exacerbates this problem.
This is why we are taking immediate steps to combat cashlessness. Big Issue North have over 350 active vendors across the country, selling at peak upto 29,333 magazines each week! However, regrettably only 1/3 of our vendors are able to proactively take contactless payments. This is why we need your help. Together, we can make all Big Issue North sellers have the option of cashless payments by the end of the year.
With more Big Issue North vendors utilising contactless card readers, we are experiencing many more benefits for example these devices provide a safer financial method, it gives a clear transaction record and supports vendors to improve their financial resilience and build their digital skills at the same time. You can directly help to change lives by donating to our digital inclusion appeal and allow us to be one step closer in closing the gap of poverty and exclusion.