News posts by tony-insp:
Big Issue North has launched a news app which will feature stories from the north of England based magazine, social news organisations and other street papers. The long in development Street News is free to download and offers a monthly subscription service.
Thirteen years ago, Zeynab Ahmed, 31, fled Somalia after living in fear under the threat of the terrorist militia al-Shabaab. She has since built a life for herself: she lives with her husband and children in Münchenstein, Switzerland and sells Surprise. She sees her future as being in Switzerland but would dearly love to see her mother in Somalia one last time.
Outgoing Street Roots editor Joanne Zuhl: “Seeing how far we’ve come is heartwarming. It’s a testament to the hundreds of vendors and volunteers, writers and readers who believed in our mission”
As she prepares to leave the Portland street paper after more than 18 years at the helm, Street Roots editor Joanne Zuhl talked to INSP about her lengthy stint leading one of the street paper network’s most established publications and where she leaves the paper after one of the most unpredictable years of her tenure.
“Scotland does not identify with its Blackness”: Soul musician and activist Joseph Malik channels Scotland’s Black voices
Joseph Malik spoke at the head of Black Lives Matter protests in Edinburgh last year as people marched against systemic racism. Since, the formerly homeless singer has had a stroke and made an album that filters the rage of Scotland’s Black community into soulful music.
9 May marks the anniversary of a speech by Robert Schuman, a French statesman who was one of the founders of what we recognise today as Europe, where he called for solidarity across borders. In this time of political division, and one even more divided by pandemic-imposed lockdowns, remembering this helps highlight efforts and achievements across Europe which contribute to making it a more inclusive, more democratic, more culturally aware, better place to live. The European Cultural Foundation is hoping to turn 9 May – what it’s billed as Europe Day – into a continent-wide holiday of togetherness. Few groups represent this kind of cohesion and unity as the street paper network.
#LookTalkAct: Hungarian street paper Fedél Nélkül launches campaign to transform how homelessness is portrayed and perceived
Hungary’s street paper Fedél Nélkül has launched a campaign, in collaboration with other international organisations, that seeks to change the way homelessness and people on the street are visually portrayed. Bemoaning negatively charged images often used in the media to illustrate homelessness, the #LookTalkAct project will create an open source, free online collection of art and photos which will improve the visual appearance of publications covering homelessness, journalists, non-governmental organizations and activists.
13 German street papers, including INSP members, have banded together to demand that the country’s state and city officials use empty hotels to house those experiencing homelessness amid ongoing restrictions and “stay at home” pleas due to the coronavirus. A petition laying out their concerns has already reached over 2,500 signatures.
Earlier this month the news broke of the death of Dimitri Koutsomytis, who dedicated 14 years of his life to working with street papers, specifically Norway’s =Oslo. Here the magazine presents some of his best photography, which was just one skill Dimitri used to better the fortunes of the street paper and, in turn, its vendors.
For society’s most vulnerable and marginalised, 2020 – and the pandemic that has defined it – has exacerbated problems already familiar to them: food security, unstable housing, social isolation, income, and access to social services as they are weakened at a time they’re needed most. Street papers, which exist to alleviate that strain, have been impacted too. It’s been hard, but the effects they’ve felt have not been uniform. As the new year approaches, INSP checked in with street paper vendors of differing circumstances across the world to reflect on these past months and to look forward with some hope.
After working with inmates at Glasgow’s Barlinnie prison for some years, musician Jill Brown sought to establish a way for exceptional talent uncovered behind bars to release their music. The result is Conviction Records, a record label and social enterprise for ex-offenders. With backing from major music A&R Eric MacLellan, Brown hopes the outreach to former prison inmates and the songs created with them will help bring convicted criminals back from the fringes of society.
News of the two decade street paper veteran Patricia Merkin’s death has been met with sadness across the street paper network. The founder, director and editor of Argentinian street paper Hecho en Bs. As. was much loved and respected by peers all over the world for her tireless and passionate work for the vulnerable and marginalised.
As all large gatherings, especially sporting events, fell victim to coronavirus lockdown restrictions, this year’s Homeless World Cup, due to take place in Finnish city Tampere, was cancelled. In the wake of the pandemic, organisers of the tournament, which brings together street soccer teams from across the globe, moved everything online in an effort to continue to use the power of sport for good. The result is this weekend’s virtual Homeless World Cup Day.