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Issue 1454 - Locked Up In Lockdown

To mark the anniversary of the first lockdown we’ve put together a special edition taking a look inside the prison system to find out how lockdown has impacted people already locked down. Almost the entire magazine has been created by people who have spent time inside over the last year.

We understand the severity of criminal acts and their far-reaching implications across communities. Our aim is not to moralise or excuse but to understand the impact of the pandemic in a population often overlooked, especially in the last year. So we hear first-hand from inmates about the reality of spending 23 hours a day inside a cell, the mental health impact of that and how they keep connected to their children on the outside. Others write on subjects varying from film reviews to music, nature writing and food. Throughout is artwork created by prisoners working with Koestler Arts, including this week’s cover image.

We also give a platform to the charities and organisations who work with prisoners so they are ready – and ready not to reoffend – when they are released, asking what happens if their work to rehabilitate has been put on hold. A prison chaplain gives their view, a prison librarian writes about the challenges they face. This unique edition provides a platform for voices that aren’t heard, and what they have to say is worth listening to.

Social Echo

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The Big Issue’s own-brand products support the creation of a range of work-based opportunities for disadvantaged people.
The Big Issue has spent over 27 years at the helm of self-help revolution. It all began with the launch of The Big Issue magazine in 1991, which was created to offer homeless and disadvantaged people the opportunity to earn a legitimate income by selling a magazine on the streets. Since then over 200 million copies magazine have been sold by over 100,000 people. Vendors buy the magazine upfront for £1.50 and sell it on to the public for £3.00, and in doing so each runs their own micro-enterprise. In 2005 Big Issue Invest was launched, with the aim of extending The Big Issue’s mission by financing the growth of social enterprises and charities across the UK. To date the organisation has directly invested in over 350 such organisations, and manages or advises on more than £170 million of social funds.
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