The Big Issue has launched a second investigation in Dundee – just over a year after someone was seen “posing” as a vendor near a busy supermarket.
A member of the public raised the alarm after spotting the man outside Morrisons on Saturday, attempting to sell copies of the magazine, despite having no formal identification.
Bosses at the magazine have since confirmed the man may have been posing as a vendor and they are looking to establish the circumstances as quickly as possible.
It’s the second time customers at the Morrisons supermarket on Afton Way have been targeted, after a similar incident in August of last year.
Big Issue vendors buy the magazines for £1.50 and are currently selling the Christmas issue at £4 allowing them to make more money during the festive period.
One customer, who had spotted the man on Saturday, said he believed the person had also been there on Tuesday attempting to sell the Christmas edition.
He added: “I remember reading the article last year about concerns of people not selling it legitimately.
“The female vendor outside Marks and Spencer at the Gallagher Retail Park always has her badge on display with a hi-vis style jacket and I usually buy it from her.
“When I saw this chap at Morrisons something wasn’t adding up for me. Surely if you wanted or needed to sell the Big Issue you’d go through the proper channels to get it done?
“I just hope folk aren’t getting conned from the man and he’s not doing genuine sellers out of a sale – especially at this time of year.”
Chris Falchi-Stead, director of sales and operations at The Big Issue, said they took matters of this nature “very seriously”.
He added: “We understand that an individual, seen outside Morrisons supermarket in Dundee, posing as a vendor is not an official seller.
“We take these matters very seriously and are currently looking into resolving the situation as quickly as possible.
“We have outreach teams who go out daily to visit and support our vendors and look out for any misconduct.
“However, in the meantime, our advice to the public would be to make sure you buy a Big Issue from someone who is showing a valid, in date badge, which includes their location.
“They should also be wearing a red tabard unless they are trainee vendors. If they are a trainee vendor, they will have a trainee badge with a valid date.
“To help someone to become a Big Issue vendor, please visit the Big Issue website to get in touch with your local outreach office.”