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ACT politicians selling The Big Issue this week in Canberra

Published: February 7 2018 - 6:05PM

ACT politicians have been hitting the streets selling The Big Issue as part of the magazine's annual CEO Selling campaign.

Chief Minister Andrew Barr, deputy chief minister Yvette Berry, Canberra Liberals deputy leader Nicole Lawder and ACT Greens leader Shane Rattenbury  donned - or will don - The Big Issue fluoro yellow vest to show support for street vendors who are working hard to improve their lives.

They join more than 100 high-profile leaders around Australia, including Telstra CEO Andrew Penn, Airbnb Australia and New Zealand manager Sam McDonagh and Origin Energy CEO Frank Calabria.

Ms Lawder was selling the magazine at the Erindale shopping centre on Monday while Mr Barr was outside ALDI in The Canberra Centre.

Mr Rattenbury was selling there on Tuesday. Ms Berry will don her vest on Friday to sell the magazine outside the Canberra Centre.

Mr Barr said he had been taking part in the campaign for some years.

"It provides a brief but important and rewarding insight into the vendor experience.  Generally, I have found Canberrans to be very generous in buying The Big Issue and supporting local vendors like Kylie," he said.

Ms Lawder was another long-time supporter.

"I've worked with The Big Issue for years supporting their work. It was great to team up with Grant again this year for the annual CEO selling campaign. Really pleased to have sold 11 copies in half an hour at Erindale shops," she said.

The Big Issue CEO Steven Persson said: "Big Issue vendors are businesspeople. They buy copies of the magazine for $3.50 and sell them to the public for $7, earning a meaningful income. 

"By taking part in CEO Selling, high-profile leaders – some competitors in the marketplace who have come together for this cause – are showing our street vendors that industry leaders support and respect their work. 

"The campaign gives the public an opportunity to buy the magazine from someone they already know and trust, helping our vendors reach more readers who will keep coming back for the good content and great cause. More customers mean more sales and, in turn, more money in vendors' pockets." 

The event celebrates International Vendor Week, run each year by the International Network of Street Papers to raise awareness of more than 100 street papers and 21,000 vendors in 34 countries around the world. 

The Big Issue launched in Australia in 1996. To date, 6500 vendors have sold more than 11 million copies of the magazine, earning over $26 million. 

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