TO THE gentleman who drew me into brief conversation in Battle High Street last Thursday lunchtime, after seeing me buy a copy of The Big Issue from the regular vendor:
I disagree that ‘these people are parasites destroying our country’.
Most Big Issue vendors are in fact British nationals, given a chance to earn a legitimate income through hard work and staying power.
The charity aims to help vendors work through the problems that led to their becoming homeless, including some who have made the difficult decision to leave their homes in other countries and seek a safer life in Britain.
Here in East Sussex we are fortunate to be sheltered from the currents of war, persecution, environmental disaster and severe poverty that drag people away from their roots.
The Big Issue’s slogan is ‘A hand up, not a handout’.
Nobody has to buy the magazine but those who do will find it opens a window onto another world which – though some might prefer it not to intrude into Battle High Street – does exist beyond here.
Name and address supplied