Life on the dole is depressing, the Beveridge report that gave us the security from being penniless, homeless and outright destitute is also the idle mans/womans bestest friend.
----<The Beveridge Report>----
The guidelines set by Beveridge Report-
1. Proposals for the future should not limited by "sectional interests" in learning from experience and that a "revolutionary moment in the world's history is a time for revolutions, not for patching".
2. Social insurance is only one part of a "comprehensive policy of social progress". The five giants on the road to reconstruction were Want, Disease, Ignorance, Squalor and Idleness.
3. Policies of social security "must be achieved by co-operation between the State and the individual", with the state securing the service and contributions. The state " should not stifle incentive, opportunity, responsibility; in establishing a national minimum, it should leave room and encouragement for voluntary action by each individual to provide more than that minimum for himself and his family" (courtesy Wikipedia).
----<The Good The Bad and the Ugly>----
I agree 80% of people on income, do want to get back into work, do want to help themselves live a dignified life, sitting around the house, while everyone else is working, is, soul destroying, the other 20% actually will do anything "not" to go back to work, I don't want to mention too much on them, but I will say this "Jeremy Kyle and Trisha Goddard should be played on every available channel till decent hard working people get home", about 8.30am-4 pm say?
----<I Can't Get a Job!!!>----
This is an excuse I hear time and time again, this and "all the Polish people are taking the jobs", no, the jobs they took, were still there BEFORE the Poles came over!, that plus you never had an interview in your life.
Anyway, you can't find a job? not ONE job?, "these people can't find a job, and my partner holds down TWO", I wish I was Prime Minister for a day, one day, real cases aside, disabled people, the chronic and long term sick aside, I would give those who are able to go out on weekends with dole money, and who go to the bookies with their "free money", the choice of; finding a voluntary position within 72 hrs, or their money stopped, harsh? I think not.
----<The Phoney Ill>----
Sometimes as well as having the "enjoyment" of getting "free money", these deceivers will try and claim DISABILITY, it's almost laughable, if "Lazyitis" is a medically backed/proven disability, then OK, I'm sorry, and I take it all back. But it isn't, and I have known people with crumbling spines, barely able to get out a chair, try and claim for this benefit, and get KNOCKED BACK, it is ridiculous.
----<Money for Drink>----
You may not know this, but people who have either convinced the DWP, or have been means tested for alcoholism, get extra money on their already "FREE MONEY". I kid you not, they get an allowance to buy drink with!, the day I go down to sign on, I will be wearing the horrendous "Diesel Zero" aftershave to smell like an Alcoholic to try and achieve status of KING CON.
This rant of a review, would not be complete without mentioning the fact that people who pay rent and full council tax because they work, are being outsmarted by those who don't, they get a free house, and I tell you, some of these homes are absolutely minted. Beautiful homes, and they pay what? a fiver a week?
it sickens me to my core.
----<Black Market Employment>----
The worst offenders above any, are the "on the side" workers, working for GBP30 a day, times 5 days=GBP150 a week on top off, free rent, and nearly free council tax, drink money, money for the litter of kids they have and the BASIC rate of dole money they already get, no wonder the economy is battered and bruised.
The Welfare state is lying in tatters, costing me and my partner a fortune, these people have better cars than some folks I know who work 5 days a week and every "3rd" Saturday.
I earn GBP15 an hour, I work 3 hours a night, and work 4 nights a week, I also work voluntarily, not because I'm a do-gooder or busy-body, but because I love the fact I can go home at night setting a good example to my daughter, my dignity is intact and I pay my way, when will the scroungers start paying theirs?
*For those people who are on benefits, and are genuinely claiming, as well as the sick/infirm, this is not a go at you guys, quite the opposite*
I am a British Muslim. I was born here. I have the exact same feeling and frustrations too. I myself have a family of 6 with 4 kids. I also work in the IT industry. I am also finding it dificult finding work in this sector, but with no such luck.I am also tired of these so called refugees and asylum seekers strolling in and taking the jobs, and getting everything else for nothing, where as I have had to study, train, and work hard to get what I want. Also not enough housing for people who really need it, but plenty opportunity for other no British residents. I blame everything happening on the government. They have opened to many door.
Well, after just over four weeks on job seekers allowance I was fortunate enough to find myself a job. I sarted on the thursday of last week and was rather busy over the weekend so it was monday before I was able to get in touch with my local job centre to inform of the change in my situation. Conveniently, my numerous attempts to call the office during my lunch break proved fruitless, as it seemed nobody was in the mood to answer the phone.
It was wednesday before I tried calling again and this time I at least got to speak to someone on the phone. I informed them that I was claiming JSA and that I had started a job on the 13th of this month. I made it clear that this was the reason I would be unable to attend my signing on appointment this friday. I was then informed by the staff member that I would have to come in to the job centre (with my "booklet") to sign off and I would still receive JSA for the times I wasn't working. However, I was also informed that I would be put down as a "missed appointment", which is very kind of them.
I just hope my local centre is open on saturday, as that will be the only opportunity I will have to visit the Job Centre. That said, my next two weekends are taken up with much more interesting plans than having to stay put at home to perform a task, that in this day and age, I should be able to carry out over the phone or if not that, achieve by visiting any job centre I happen to be in the vicinity of. In fact, tomorrow I plan to visit my the job centre nearest to my place of work (which won't be my local centre) and attempt to sign of.
Additonaly, I recently had to send off (to the Inland Revenue) details of times I had spent in and out of employment since the start of the year. To be truthful, I had no choice but to note that my JSA claim was continuing while I was employed (albeit at the time of writing only a few days) in the view that I would quickly and easily be able to cancel my claim. It now seems that this will not be the case.
In an ideal world, I would be able to have this straightened out by tomorrow. But then again, this isn't an ideal world, is it?
This narrowly escapes a very bad rating' as some of the people I spoke with were actually quite helpful.
My husband was an IT Contractor until May 2002. His current contract expired and to date he is still unemployed. The IT boom has all but died and even though he is a qualified MSCE professional with skills in Unix and NT, he has had only 2 interviews and now is applying for jobs that are paying half of his previous salary. I am at home with our three children, the youngest being only 8 weeks old so he is the main wage earner. We have had to "sign on" every two weeks to receive a pathetic £255 each fortnight in which to pay our mortgage, our bills, our food, petrol and food. My husband has never claimed in his life and neither have I. We have both worked hard all our lives, I only left my work to raise a family. Yet as British Citizens this is the full amount of "benefit" we can have. We have cancelled our life insurance, our house insurance policys, cashed in our shares, used all our savings and borrowed from family just to survive. So why when my husband signs on, the job centre is full of asylum seekers, including afghans, Somali's, Kosovan's milking our system and getting everything. They get houses, cars, food tokens, clothing allowance all for coming into our country underneath a lorry or in the luggage haul. Its disgusting and Britian is failing its own citizens. We are on the verge of loosing our home and with three young children under 5, its breaking my heart with worry. We receive no more help but this brand of person get the whole kit and caboodle. Where is Tony Blair coming from? To top it off, these class of person (for want of a better name) then receive free training at college to get skills and take jobs away from us. Its humiliating enough to sign on but its even worse to have to mix with these people who are milking the system and laughing in our faces. Perhaps you might be interested in reading about an incident that happened just before Christmas. My elderly aunt was
on a bus when it pulled in outside the dole office just before christmas. A Somali woman got on, obviousley been to get her benefit. She had a free bus pass. There was a young boy of about 10 years old sitting on the packed bus. This "lady" approached the boy and said to him "get up", in which he obeyed. No please, or a thank you followed. When his mother came to his rescue, she was asked to leave the bus by the driver. Then to top it off, the somali lady showed just how much English she had learn't since joing our country and displayed two fingers at the young mother and her son as they walked passed her window. Get these people off benefits, send them home and dont let any more in otherwise England will be no more. Just for the record we had an awful Christmas as we couldnt afford to buy our children any thing. Try explaining to a five year old why Santa didnt come to him, it broke my heart. My husband has a folder thick full of job applications and rejections - why? Because Andy Afghan has got the job on free training and will do it for half the salary my husband is worth. Job seekers allowance is not for us its for the non English. I have never been racist but my heart is full of hatred as a result of the past year on the dole.
Now I'm not one to moan, ok i am! I'm a singer and a musician, i've got a degree in music performance and i have sang on many of the uk's famous stages such as the london palladuim so when i needed some help with money during a lapse of employment i went on the dole hoping that all the nasty rumours i hear about them are false. i was wrong it was worse than i thought it was. First of all i went in, not knowing where to go, so i asked a woman and she never took her eye of her work she just pointed at a desk and a queue of people that just looked like they came out of a grave. So me in my suit (i was at a job interview!) joined the queue, when i finally got there they asked my to fill in forms then to join the queue again. How lovely i thought! So they looked through asking me about every job like i was lying. " You were on the palladuim stage?!" she asked " yes me and the late ted rodgers, you may regonize my face from local theatres though" i replied. i got nothing back, not even a smile. I thought to myself the people in mcdonalds give a smile (well sometimes, that could be a my next opinion!) So after they look through there forms they give you a time to come back for an interview so that is another week without any money!! yeah! But Hold the boat there was a good point after about 2 weeks of signing my name, being asked if i were working and being accused of lying they put me on new deal, which put me in touch with a nice lady that understood where i was coming from, put me in touch with a producer, got me some work, makin sure it was under 16 hours so i still got my benefit- then she left. So i just left it, it really wasn't worth the time, beacause they started asking for pay slips etc although i did have some from my shop job, what musician give you pay slips? Basically i tried to get a job in all the time and i had a job during some of the time but they still treated me the sa
me as all the other people that just turn up every thursday and sign their name!
When i left school at 16 years old, i was already in a job. I was working as a cashier since i was 15 and a half. I left working as a cashier when i was 17 as i hated it so much, so i decided to try the world of administration. I went to a college and did a course - NVQ level 2 in business administration. This involved going to college one day a week and to the workplace 4 days a week. I worked 40 hours every week for £40. That works out at £1 an hour. I know it was only training - but to tell you the truth, i did more work than what most of the rest of the staff working full time did put together.(I am a very hardworker and like to get everything done on time. I always completed everything before the deadline, so i suppose thats why they gave me more work). I suppose they thought they could use me since i only cost £40 a week. Anyway, when the course finished, i had no money as i had been trying to apply for jobs for 3 months with not even an answer from the companies i'd applied for to say i hadn't been picked for an interview. For all i know, my CV's etc could have been unread or lost in the post. I was also worried about working as I hadn’t got on very well as a cashier or a administration student as I had been picked on by other workers because I was very shy. I had stayed doing the administration training until 1 month before I was 19. Ever since i had left the NVQ training, my parents had been moaning at me to get job seekers allowance, but I didn’t fancy the thought of going somewhere on my own every fortnight. The idea scared me as I am a very shy and quiet person. But in the end after 3 months of running out of money, I finally decided to give it a go. Partly to stop my parents moaning at me and partly as I desperately needed the money. My mum had kept reminding me that I was entitled to the money just as much as anyone else in my situation and I was silly not to take it etc etc etc, so in the end as you can imagine,
it became unbearable, so that’s what pushed me into going. My mum also told me that going to the job centre would give me more confidence as I would have to be independent by going there on my own! WHAT A MISTAKE!!!!! My mum came with me to the job centre. I was so glad that she did as I had no idea what to do or where to go. It also seemed like a huge social place. We firstly went to reception and they told us to go up to the welcome desk on the second floor. We walked into the appropriate room and that was when my legs started to shake – there was a queue of about 20 people and there were loads of people sitting on the lack of chairs in the room. One thing that scares me, is people looking at me. I am so paranoid, the reason being as I was bullied at secondary school. So you can imagine my horror when I entered the room and everyone turned to look at me. I just wanted to run out and never come back. But of course that was not possible – I didn’t want to look more of a fool, than what I felt. We waited in the queue for what felt like years, then when we finally reached the front, the lady talked to me, with an impatient, I don’t care, look on her face. She gave me a clipboard with a form on it and told me to fill it out and she would be with me in about 10 minutes. I sat down with my mum. Luckily we’d been able to grab a couple of chairs that were free. The form was very easy to fill out. It just asked for details about any work I’d done and my name and address etc. Easy I thought!!! But it wasn’t as easy as I thought!!! We had to wait nearly 2 hours, just to be seen by this person. Can you believe that? Since when does 10 minutes sound like 2 hours? I would have understood that they were busy if they were, but the lady spent most of her time chatting to her neighbour about what they’d got up to last night. So much for fast service!!! At last we manag
ed to get seen. My mum came to the desk with me as I was too scared to go on my own. Unfortunately in the job centre, all interviews etc are done in one big room, so anybody can over hear any confidential matter. This scared me even more. If it was done in a separate room then it wouldn’t have been so bad, but in 1 big room for the whole lot. It didn’t feel very comfortable at all for me. The lady just asked me about what I’d already written on the form (god knows why). I suppose they have nothing better to do. Then she handed me a big envelope with loads of forms and booklets to fill in. Oh my god! There were more forms to fill in than the amount of people who change their underwear everyday (not literally, but that’s how it felt). We finally left there and my mum brought me a milkshake for all my hard work today, of facing up to some of my worst fears. But what she didn’t know was that was the easiest part!!! I was called to an interview with one of the job seekers staff, to do an agreement plan for work. I was even more terrified of this so my boyfriend came with me before he went to work, which calmed me down, and made me feel much more comfortable. I had to tell my advisor about the kind of work I would like to do and about how I was going to look for work and generally basic information about myself. He also noticed that I lacked confidence and told me that often this can come from being bullied or other problems and said that he would speak to another department as he thought this was some form of a disability, as it could stop me getting certain types of work. The good thing about this interview though was the fact that this man was very nice and treated me with respect and was very friendly and helpful especially since he knew I was quiet. He then told me where to go and what day to come to sign on just before I left. It was a Thursday. My boyfriend came with me again for moral suppor
t as I knew I would only be in there for about 10 minutes. I was wrong!! 10 minutes seemed more like 10 hours. My appointment to sign on was for 10.20am, and I didn’t get seen till 11.30pm, even though there were only 4 people in front of me. I also noticed that a lot of the staff were just standing around talking about nothing and the ones that were actually working (2 or 3) were very slow. There were even members of staff sitting at the desks where they were supposed to be serving people – reading newspapers!!! Now can you believe that??? I am sure you can believe this though – there was one guy who seemed to be in there waiting longer than me who stood up and went over to the reception desk and started swearing. A lot of people agreed with him and so did I, though I’d never have the confidence to say anything like that. At last after what felt like forever, I was actually seen. I thought it wouldn’t be too bad, as they would know I was shy and it was only my 1st time at signing on. Well I was wrong!! They treated me like a fly they could just squash under their shoes. They treated me as if they were better than me as they had jobs and like I was a low life who didn’t even deserve being served as a 3rd class person. They really knocked my lack of confidence even more. They looked at me funny and didn’t seem friendly and they were very miserable and rude and impatient. OK, they are very busy where they work, but they could have at least managed 1 welcomming smile. While they were sorting my details out, I looked to the job seeker next to me and he was having an argument with the man on the desk, which isn’t surprising, as they are so nasty to you. If they had been nice to the people they dealt with, then they might just all have a nice day and a smile. I showed them clips of jobs I’d applied for – I didn’t know what else I could show as proof. The lady seemed impr
essed a bit though. Luckily my time at the job centre was over, until another fortnights time. I was absoulutely dreading it again. My boyfriend started to not come in with me anymore as he couldn’t stand it in there. It felt like I was visiting hell every two weeks, but I’m sure loads of people would agree that is actually is hell in there! Everytime after the second time I went in there, the staff got nastier and nastier and didn’t believe me or others about the jobs we’d applied for. The biggest reason why they didn’t believe me was because most jobs I applied for didn’t get in touch with me, not even a thank you for being interesting in our company, but you were unsuccessful letter. Through my time at the job centre I only got one interview, 2 replies from unsuccessful companies and a whole lot of stress from going to the job centre. I was put through this depressing time for £42 a week. That was more a week than what I got doing my NVQ. No wonder there are so many people on the dole and not in work. Every week I went, I had to wait in loads of queues with strangers staring at me all for a 5 minute appointment, and somehow, I don’t know how – I managed to put up with this for 6 months. I only left being on the dole as I was going on holiday for two weeks and they wouldn’t let me stay on. I came back off holiday last Sunday and have vowed never to go on it ever again. My parents can’t make me as I am 19 and can make my own decisions, even though we keep having a lot of arguments. But I’d rather have arguments and no money than go back to that hell! I am going to give you my ops on the advantages and disadvantages! Advantages: 1) you get £42 a week for applying for jobs Disadvantages: 1) They don’t help you at all – they just tell you the same thing every week 2) They are so nasty 3) They don’t work much –
they just talk or read newspapers 4) They treat you like they’re better than you 5) They think you lie when you say you’ve applied for jobs 6) They make you wait in queues for upto 2 hours just for a 5min appointment 7) There’s loads more but I cant fit them on to this opinion – else everyone would get bored! I have now decided to work through wholesale on ebay. I’ve read that millions of people worldwide do it, so I am too! I feel much more comfortable doing this too! By the way, this opinion is based on my emotions and fears. People who are very confident have more than likely had different experiences to me. I also believe that people who dont look for work should not be allowed to get job seekers allowance - it should only be for people who are genuinely looking for work. I for one was geniunely looking for work, though due to my current circumstances - it made it hard, and employers didn't want to know. I have tried to overcome this - i have not been sitting round doing nothing. I have been going to counselling for months at different places to try to overcome it but i dont think i ever will as i have been like this since the day i was born!
It's not often I have a bit of a rant so let's put that right and I'll have one here! I had worked full time and paid full tax and National Insurance all my adult life up until January 2000 when I became ill. For about a month I battled on but at the end of January 2000 and I was signed off work sick by my doctor and unfortunately this has now become a long term illness/disability (Myalgic Encephalomyletis/M.E). For the first few months I remained on full pay from my employers afterwhich I went on to Statutory Sick Pay for about 2 further months, after that I was/would have been left with no income. With reluctance I knew I had to claim benefits or live on thin air. I put in claims for Incapacity Benefit and Disability Living Allowance - I met the application criteria for both. To begin with finding out what you may be entitled to is a nightmare - you can go to your local Benefits Agency, ring them or consult the Citizens Advice Bureau - I know that now but many people do not know where to find the information. I collected the forms from the Benefits Agency and duly filled them in. I am well used to forms from my line of work but these were still long and complicated. I sent off the completed forms together with any proof of identity or supporting information needed (doctors letters, sick notes etc) and received an acknowledgement that they had received my applications a few weeks later, advising me that it may take around six weeks to process my claim. So I waited and waited and waited....... I rang them a few times to enquire about my applications and each time was told that it was "being processed" and I should hear something soon. To cut a long story short two months later I was notified that I had been accepted for Incapacity Benefit and EIGHT months later I received the same concerning the Disability Living Allowance. Both Benefits were back paid from the claim date but I am intrigued
to know what they expect claimants to live on in the meantime?? Income Support claims seem to take nearly as long as well and they can be more urgent! So all was fine for about 6 to 8 months until the time came for renewal applications and reviews for both Benefit claims. I was visited by a Benefits Agency doctor to review my Disability claim - he asked and did very little and wrote a report that was a pile of rubbish and ended up with my renewal being refused - I appealed and supplied CORRECT information from my doctor and my Occupational Therapist and my Benefit was eventually reinstated to run for two years - this process took 5 months. Again for my Incapacity Benefit review I had another visit from a Benefits Agency doctor ( a different one) who wrote a very different report and I had a letter within a week confirming that my Benefit would remain in place for the following year (subject to any change of circumstances of course). So why the difference?? I'm sorry that this account is maybe rather garbled but to list all the in and outs would take forever and this gives a basic overview of my experience from the DSS. My basic point is that, while I appreciate that there are fraudsters out there costing taxpayers a great deal, surely they should realise that claims for benefits from sick or disabled people supported by firm medical evidence shouldn't be treated with the same amount of suspicion? The majority of fraud takes place with Jobseekers Allowance and Housing Benefit. I know from many contacts with the same condition as myself that making a successful claim for Incapacity Benefit or Disability Allowance is difficult, time-consuming and much harder to do fraudulently. Some of these people I know of have terminal illnesses or far more severe disabilities than my own which cannot be "faked" yet they get the same sort of treatment!! Is it really fair to treat EVERYONE as a cheat or fraud? (Guilty until
proven innocent?!!) For myself and many others this whole process can exacerbate any ill effects, stress etc through its complicated procedure and the sheer length of time involved (very rarely less than two to three months). I think the DSS needs to take another look at its system within these areas and exercise more compassion and common sense. Thank you for listening/reading!
Hmmmm. I'm not a very happy bumble at the moment. The DSS have done it again! I've been on the giro for about five months, and I don't think I've had more than two in a row, all because I work as on-call staff for a drug de-tox unit. Now, I don't work in set hours, every week. It can be a month sometimes where I don't work at all, this puts me in the category of 'regularly seeking employment' and the giro I receive depends on the hours I work every fortnight. You can work up to sixteen hours a week, before you don’t get the giro. You wouldn't think that would be too difficult to implement would you? Well I've certainly got a few things to say: Firstly, there are another billion forms to fill out for the DSS once you get put on the books at work. Then you have to fill another form out to say exactly when, where, how you got there, and what you were doing when you work, what the wages are, when you receive your wages etc... And they expect you to give them your pay slips, every fortnight, even if you haven't worked (eh???????!). This is because of all the dole cheats, who have not only stopped the giro from raising with inflation (its just meandered around forty pounds a week for the past fifteen years), they have caused so much red tape to be put up, that by the time all the forms have been filled out, and all the proper checks made, you are in a debt that is difficult to get rid of, as the dole is only enough to just scrape by with (if you live in a tent and don't pay rent!). So if you can't find employment for some time, you are going to be in trouble. Secondly I have a problem with the fact that the company I work for do not supply pay-slips for the weeks that I haven't worked. The DSS don't like this, and I constantly get hic-upped out of the system, and then I have to start over, again and again, all the same forms I filled out a few week before, a ra
ther tiring, and mundane process. It’s all so bloody irritating. And then I have to wait for the forms to be processed, and adjudicated by third party. And then, only then, can I receive a giro. Barely enough to feed a mouse. I don't know how some people just don't care, they go along with the system, don't complain, don't act if they've been trodden all over. You shouldn’t take this crap lying down, people need to stand up for themselves because the system is in dire straits, and in desperate need of reform. Ta for taking the time to read all the way to the bottom. From a rather pissed off little bumble.
Having only spent brief periods of time on the dole over the past 14 years I consider myself lucky, or do I? The first time I got made redundant I was 20 and the company I worked for moved to another area of the country and several of us where laid off as we where unable or unwilling to move. Luckily I found another job almost straight away and was never given any benefits as they where still processing my application when I found a new job. The last time I found myself unemployed was 2 years later and this is where my little rant starts. I go to the Social and I apply for unemployment benefit. Now in the real world things get done pretty quickly but in DHS land there is no sense of reality and 5 weeks later I am still awaiting my application to be processed. Again I was fortunate to find another job and have been employed since (Thank god!) Now, I actually got off my arse and went to find work. How anyone can not find work for years and years is beyond me. Either your too bloody idle to go and look, your sights are set too high or your benefit is too much and your thinking why should I work when I can get money for sitting on my backside watching TV all day. Now if I sit and work out how much I pay each month for National Insurance contributions and how much I must have paid in the past 14 years. Then how hard it is to get any help if you are in trouble, and then how ineffective the NHS and Social Services are today, it makes me feel a little bit mad. Now the money you pay in National Health contributions is a kind of redundancy protection payment and the money paid towards health care is health insurance. But you try to get either of these services and its like getting blood out of a stone. Perhaps the welfare state doesn?t work anymore or perhaps I?m on the wrong end and it only works if you?re a taker not a giver (I mean you only remove from the state and never add anyt
hing back to it). I propose three methods to get the Social Services and NHS back on track. 1. Social Security is only paid for 12 months before it is stopped and you must find a job, going to job clubs and reporting your progress being from 3 months. If not a total cut they it should be halved as an incentive, filling in a credit/debit form in should solve this. I would bet that those who didn?t have any money would soon find work. Like I said earlier if you continue to get paid for sitting on your arse all day and doing nothing what are you going to do all day? Exactly. 2. School leavers cannot claim even income support until they have paid enough stamp. If they do not have a job either continued education or training schemes are compulsory. Until such time as a job is found for them or the trainee finds a job. 3. For the NHS there needs to be a serious look at the number of Administration staff working for the NHS. Too many middle management who?s only purpose is to waste NHS money on company cars and big fat pay cheques. Why does it need so many managers to run a hospital. I know all the above are all pipe dreams of somebody who is bloody annoyed that our public health and benefit system, which was for the health and benefit of the people of this once great nation has been screwed so far into the ground by a choice few. Who have seen to feed off the system making a cushy living for themselves and their family. The spongers and scroungers who have never and have no intention of getting off their arses and doing a decent honest days work like the rest of us. I have another alternative and that?s to let people opt out of the system altogether, with the amount of NI I pay every month, I would gladly opt out. I know for a fact that I can get health and redundancy insurance for a damn sight less than I pay in NI contributions. I know I could get Private health insurance and other services but why should I
pay twice. Once for the Spongers, and once for myself. I dunno, maybe as long as the government lets this happen then people like you and me are paying for others to live a life without work. Whatever I know that I am bloody annoyed. © copyright 2002, Mike Porter.
Hopefully I will never have to go on the dole again. It was soooo depressing. Here's my story. When I was 17 I moved in with my boyfriend. After I had completed my A Levels I looked for a job but I wasn't yet 18 and didn't have any luck. I got shortlisted for one job but when I told them I had a trip booked to go and see my Dad in Brussels for a week they withdrew the offer. If I had still been living at home I probably wouldn't have bothered with the dole, but as I was living independently, we were very short on money. My boyfriend was working, but on a wage of £10K, most of which went on paying off debts. We were living in a council flat with only a bed and a microwave. Oh yes, and an inflatable chair for furniture! So I went to the Job centre to sign on. If you are under 18 you can get money known as severe hardship. You can only get this if your parents have refused to pay for you and you have to fill in loads of forms for the princley sum of £32 a week. Eventually it was sorted out and I was grateful for the money. I had a letter saying they were going to pay me a home visit. Now apparantly the rules are that if you are living with a partner and they have a job then you are not entitled to state benefits. This is totally wrong in my opinion. Fair enough if your partner/husband is a millionaire, but my boyfriend wasn't getting enough money to support himself, let alone me as well. Also, I think it is a dangerous situation to expect a partner to supply the other with money when they are out of work. What about abusive partners? This would leave a woman with no independance. People need their own money and partners shouldn't be expected to support them if they are out of work, unless they can afford to and want to. The lovely people from the DSS decided to visit me on the morning of my 18th birthday. How kind of them. I don't like lying, but I had to make up a big story about my boyfriend being a friend of my
brother, who was letting me sleep on his sofa. My years in youth theatre must have paid off as they believed me and now I was 18, the allowance was raised to £42 a week. Why I would suddenly need an extra £10 a week when the day earlier I was expected to survive on £32, I'm not quite sure. They have to draw the line somewhere though. The "dole" is actually Job Seekers Allowance, and is only given if you keep to certain conditions. You have to be available and willing to work, and actively seeking. You have to see an advisor and work out an action plan. I was very keen to get a job but with A levels I didn't want a rubbish job as a cleaner or a shop assistant (no offence to any reading). So I would tootle down to the Job Centre a few times a week and look through the vacancies. Unless you are looking for work as a builder, cleaner, shop assistant or secretary, don't bother using the job centre. I found the Job centre a disappointing service. Most (but not all) of the staff were somewhat patronising as though they thought they were better than me. Several of them couln't use the computers and made spelling mistakes when entering my details. Maybe I'm being pedantic, but I found it frustrating to watch these people who couldn't cope, in a job I could do easily. Out of all the jobs I applied for with the job centre, I got only one interview, which I didn't get the job for anyway. Being on JSA (job seekers allowance) is depressing and gets you down. The worst part is signing on. This has to be done once a fortnight, you have to take your book down, queue up and sign to say that you have been keeping your agreement and have not as yet found work. The worst thing about this is that all the people in the queue are there for the same thing and they all look down. There is a mixture of clients although a lot of middle aged men and teenagers when I was there. It took me 2 months to find a job
which I only stuck out for a while because I hated it. When I quit though, I didn't go back on the dole even though I needed the money because I couldn't face going through it again. The whole process is demeaning and after a while you feel as though you will be caught up in the cycle of applying for jobs and signing on forever. For people who sign on as a choice rather than go to work, they are welcome to it. If they want to survive on £42 a week, day time TV and depressing queues, then let them. Having said all that, the benefit system is there for the people that pay into it through their taxes when they need it most, whether that be through unemployment or sickness. It may be demeaning, but at least the money is enough to feed you and buy essentials. For people who say it is not enough I would disagree. No, it's not enough to keep you in Gucci and Hamlet cigars, but it's enough for the basics. At the end of the day, you are being given money for doing nothing, and some countries don't even have that. I never felt like the money was my own, and found it bizzare coming out of the post office with £82 in my pocket for nothing. In a strange way I am glad that I had to sign on and I have had to have rubbish jobs. Some people never have to do that, and after university walk straight into a job with no experience of what every day people go through. Then these narrow minded people go on and become bosses, or the people that run our country. Far better in my opinion to have people in charge who are experienced in life and can relate to all types of people. Let me know what you think. :-)
I dont begrudge people married or not claiming Income Support but I DO begrudge people who take advantage of the situation. I myself have been on Income Support and have to admit I hated it because I never had any money and could not treat my son. Yes I was a single parent. Where is the dad in all this? Dead!! So, through no fault of my own I had to struggle and its not easy finding a job when you have a child especially if there are no child minders in the area you live. Luckily enough I found a job and someone reliable to look after my son while I went to work. Now a neighbour of mine has 4 children (3 different dads, not that I am against that) claims Income Support and abuses the fact that the rent is paid, council tax and whatever else she gets free. She refuses to look for work because she wants to wait until her youngest is 14. Why??? Well to be honest she is happy claiming Income Support and staying at home. Recently it was her sons birthday and she applied for a budget loan to buy him a very expensive present. Why? She could have bought something small after all it is the thought that counts and not the amount of money spent. I thought these budget loans where for something needed in the house like a new cooker or for a bed that had broken and not for birthday presents. People like these are abusing the system and I know that she could go to work as all her children are at school. There are people out there that really cannot go to work and are claiming Income Support for ligitimate reasons and people like my neighbour are making it more and more difficult for them.
Rather than being just about the Social Security department, I'm going to share my experiences of the past few months and especially the last few days and weeks. Since I left school I've been in work, be it NVQ training or full time employment. Every job I've had has been in retail and mainly in computers. At the end of four years I had thin job security and had been thrust into situations I wasn't ready for with minimal support. Subsequently I got a bit of depression, stress-call it what you will, I was messed up. So I saved money and went to New York to follow a beloved career path. You see I want to be in film and I needed experience. In October of last year I returned to the UK with a bit of money in my pocket but no job. As it turned out the company I left went into recievership two weeks after I threw worked my last day. I didn't have to sign on but my friend said I should if only for National Insurance purposes. Well I've out in for four years so I might as well get something out right? A year later and still jobless, I couldn't even get an interview at the local TV station. So because of my young age I'm out onto the New Deal to help me get into something I want to do. So far I'm quite un-impressed and my experience in the last few days hasn't changed my view. Various meetings with my appointed advisor has resulted in the same things being repeated every time. I say what I want to do and the avenues I could explore but no help is really given, just the same lines. In fact all the usual options are followed by admission that business ideas put forward by new Deal people to get out of their rut rarely get accepted. Hows that for inspiration! As part of New Deal you have to attend a two week refreshers course-this is where the fun starts. I class myself as having some very good skills, I wouldn't call myself amazingly qualified but my CV has some assuring qualities. Here I find m
yself in a room with 11 other people. We are told to produce a newspaper front page listing out achievements and goals. Then we are asked to list the advantages of being employed and un-employed. The majority of the group seem to think that being un-employed means you have more time to go down the pub, spend with your girlfriend and get a long lie in after a hard night-oh you also get a free lunch. Most of the guys in this group are around the 20-25 year old age range but seem to still be acting like 8 year olds with snide sexual comments and who can't finish a couple of sentences without saying some blue swear word. And here I am trying to get something positive out of being here but getting more and more annoyed. I wish someone had some good information or could out me in touch with people related to my chosen career path, someone who could steer me in the right direction and offer helpful advice. But no I find myself dioing a computer test that finds me my ideal profession. Apparantky I'm destined to be a Metal Engraver or a Wig-maker. I know nothing about metal or wigs! I'm hoping that New Deal starts to give me useful advice in the coming weeks, if anything this course has just shown me where the government are going wrong. They are spending money on taking people out for the day to climb ladders and such. I'd rather take that money and put it into sending out my CV to as many people as possible. The idea you have of people on the dole can be justified by the people I've encountered in the last few days. However there are some of us who want to work and have something to give and don't like being branded with the same iron.
as i am not too far off retirement age idecided too apply for a retirement forecast. i wrote originally but found the forms far too complex for me to complete to the satisfaction of the agency so i decided to try the online version . ifound the websitevery helpful and to be sure each page was filled in correctly iwas unable too proceed to the next until all boxes were filled in. it is asyou would expect a secure site you obviously have to supply your national insurance number and other details . they said my forecast would arrive by post within forty days which it did . i found the site easy to use and can give it full marks