Oxfam halts sale of second hand items

Web 2 oxfam bookshop

The charity has said it will no longer sell the items online, following the closure of its shops last week

26th March 2020 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

A major charity has suspended sales of all second hand goods as a result of the coronavirus.

Oxfam announced on Monday (23 March) that it would suspend all sales of second hand goods from its online shop, and phase out collections of donated items, to protect the health of staff, volunteers and the public.

It follows the decision last week to close all high street shops until the heightened danger posed by the coronavirus has passed. Some staff had been due to continue working to keep the online shop operating, and to process donations of goods.

The temporary pause only applies to second hand items, and customers can continue to place online orders of new goods from the Sourced by Oxfam range for now, as these are processed at a facility where social distancing measures can be implemented. They can also continue ordering Oxfam Unwrapped charity gift cards.

Oxfam said it was aiming to collect all goods donated to date in the coming days, but asked members of the public not to leave donations at banks or outside shops, and instead to hold onto them until operations resume.

 Anne Webb, Oxfam’s deputy trading director, said: “Our online shop relies on our amazing staff and volunteers to list, pack and post thousands of second hand items. We must prioritise the well–being of our people, and the communities they live in, by urging them to stay at home.

“Sadly this also means we will be suspending collections of second hand goods from our network of donation points across the country. We are asking the public to please hang onto goods until we are able to start collecting again – their generosity makes Oxfam’s work fighting poverty around the world possible.

“We would like to thank our loyal customers and our family of dedicated volunteers and staff. We look forward to resuming normal service as soon as possible.”

The Oxfam Online Shop stocks over 100,000 second hand products from clothes and rare books to furniture and music. Oxfam said it would contact customers with outstanding orders to arrange a refund in the coming days. Last year, Oxfam’s shops raised £17.4 million after costs for its work fighting poverty and helping people survive humanitarian emergencies.