Author Topic: Sometimes you do not know how lucky you are  (Read 720 times)

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Offline Ovacikpeedoff

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Sometimes you do not know how lucky you are
« on: November 14, 2017, 01:17:19 AM »
Through my working life I have been lucky. In 40 years I have never been unemployed and I have never had cause to claim benefits. When it comes to claiming I am a total novice. Tonight I watched the movie I,Daniel Blake. To anyone that does not know the story it revolves around a man who had a heart attack that is unable to work, has to claim benefits and shows all the hoops that he has to go through.

Initially, I started to laugh with what was happening when he went to the Job Centre. It  did not take long for my mood to change to total despair. Daniel had his benefit for unfit to work removed based on a form that was completed by an individual without any medical experience. This individual was able to overrule his cardiovascular surgeon and GP. An option he had was to appeal but it was obvious from the film that it could take months before an appeal could be heard. In the mean time he could not claim any benefits.

If the behaviour of the staff and hoops that the unemployed have to jump through is in any way indicative of what actually goes on in Job Centres then anyone unemployed has my sympathy.

I thought I was watching Star Trek. The approver has refused your claim, you cannot appeal until the approver contacts you. You must apply online. If you have not completed the form properly you will be referred and you could be sanctioned 4 weeks for first offence, 13 weeks for second offence. You must show that you have spent 35 hours trying to find work. It really appeared to be that some many fences will be put in the way that it is likely you will fall over one.

If this is how claimants are treated it is an absolute disgrace. Yes, there maybe chancers trying to abuse the system but there are many genuine claimants that seem to be treated like dirt as well. People should be treated with respect and allowed to keep their dignity. As I said earlier I was lucky. The only time that I really struggled was when mortgage rates hit 15.75% and my mortgage payments trebled as I was on an interest only mortgage.

As a matter of interest I looked on the government's website on claiming benefits and I did not have a clue where to start. Universal credit cannot be claimed if you do or pay certain things. The site then says go to Citizens Advice site which I did and the site says it cannot tell me what I can claim because it has not been built and operational.

At present the minimum waiting period for universal credit is or will be 4 weeks. This is a long time to be without any income.

I do not support or condone spongers and cheats. Those fraudsters who claim should be treated harshly. Their actions should not be used to tar those genuine claimants who deserve to be treated as human beings.

As I have never seen the inside and experienced the workings of a Job Centre I apologize if I have misrepresented them.

Offline BernieTeyze

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Re: Sometimes you do not know how lucky you are
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2017, 03:24:31 AM »
Sadly, this isn't new. Each time the government make changes its a nightmare. Universal credit has a waiting time you can complete forms stating you are nil income, while you are waiting for your universal credit claim to be processed. You can ask for an advance payment,however  this is a loan and will reduce your universal credit payment until it's paid off. It's on citizens advice website. Job centre staff are only following government guidelines as are the staff that cover housing benefit and council tax benefit. This should have been completely up and running by now  but it's a shambles.,citizens advice can signpost anyone to get food parcels and electric and gas credit, Here's a bit off their website.
Getting an advance payment

The DWP should ask you if you need an advance payment at your Universal Credit interview. The interview takes place at a Jobcentre, and you’ll need to call your Jobcentre to arrange it. The DWP will cancel your claim if you don’t call within 7 days.

You’ll need to say how much money you need and give a breakdown of what it’s for. For example, you could tell them how much you need for bills, food and rent. The DWP will then work out how much your advance payment can be.

Once DWP have agreed to an advance payment you should get the money in 3 working days. Tell the DWP if you need it sooner than this - they can pay you on the same day if you’d have no other money to live on.

The DWP will pay the advance into the same bank account you’re using for your Universal Credit claim.

If you've already had your interview

You can phone the Universal Credit helpline to ask for an advance payment any time up to 1 month plus 1 week after you apply for Universal Credit.

It’s best to ask as soon as possible. Remember that once you claim Universal Credit it will take at least 5 or 6 weeks for you to get your first payment (sometimes more). So you'll need to think about how much money you'll need until your first payment.

Universal Credit helpline
Telephone: 0345 600 0723
Textphone: 0345 600 0743

Open Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm

Calls cost up to 9p a minute from landlines and up to 55p a minute from mobiles. It should be free if you call from your mobile and have landline calls included in your contract. You can call them and ask them to call you back.

The DWP have said they're going to make this helpline free, but it isn't yet.

Repaying the advance payment

The amount of Universal Credit you get will be reduced until the advance payment has been fully paid off - this should take up to:

6 months if you've made a new claim
12 months if you've been moved to Universal Credit from another benefit
You shouldn't be asked to pay this back any sooner if you can't afford it - contact your nearest Citizens Advice if you need help with this.

You’ll be told how much the repayments will be and how long it’ll take for the advance payment to be paid off.

Offline nichola

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Re: Sometimes you do not know how lucky you are
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2017, 06:17:01 AM »
I finally got around to watching I Daniël Blake a few months ago. I expected to be angry but I actually I thought overall it was very understated.

I'm on a number of Facebook groups about the DWP and the horror stories there from people's actual experiences about the humiliation, indignity and plain despair that have to go through this degrading experience is enough to break your heart.

It's an absolute travesty that people with disabilities are forced to attend appointment in often ill appointed offices without disabled access with so called 'health care professionals' that have no medical knowledge whatsoever that have a form to fill in that's all about achieving targets of an 80% failure rate.

People with disabilities are having their cars taken away often removing their only viable option of getting to work which offers them a small measure of dignity and self respect.

Universal credit is a damn disgrace. It's not fully rolled out yet but the waiting time is allegedly 6 weeks but for many people that have been used as guinea pigs the waiting period has been many months, not weeks, leaving them with NO money at all.

It's also been a ploy to roll all benefits into one which sounds like it makes sense, cutting out a host of administrative costs but actually it's reduced overall income by hundreds per month for most if not all people and it's reassessed every month which leads to yet more delays and uncertainty over how much it will be, meaning people can't budget and actually increasing the administrative costs.

There's so much more that could be said but I'll conclude by saying that we're not talking about scrounges and lay about we're talking about the already most vulnerable in our society that with the best will in the world will never work and they are being slowly but surely killed off. And if you don't like my last comment then check the facts about those that have already died as a result of these benefit cuts that were proved in a court of law, figures on how many people have died due to this heartless abuse of power and that the government tried to keep out of the public domain.

Offline busybee

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Re: Sometimes you do not know how lucky you are
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2017, 07:00:27 AM »
I watched,I Daniel Blake and I cried my heart out.  I worked in the job centre for 2years and hated every moment.  I decided to leave for my own principles..... My colleagues said why? you are are permanent, you have flexi hours, you will get a pension, bla, bla and more bla.  Yes I saw the scoungers, many of whom you cant catch out, some after 6mths survelience, and if the i's weren't dotted and t's weren't crossed, it got thrown out of court.  The other side of the coin was the heartbreak, of grown men who had been made redundant and mortgages to pay, having to wait 6 months to get into job club, where free newspapers were available, use of computers and printers, CV techniques etc. (Big deal) Having to beg for a travel warrant to get to an interview miles away.  I could write so much more but my anger will go off the Richter scale. So yes, I left and decided to go and work for a charity organisation.  The system was all wrong in the late 80's and to my knowledge it hasn't improved.  I got my peace of mind, all be it to my own cost, no comfy civil service pension....but to me personaly was worth it, not to experience the plight of so many individuals going through such tough times and not being able to help them, hindered by many Government laws which are not fair.

Offline JohnF

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Re: Sometimes you do not know how lucky you are
« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2017, 08:34:40 AM »
These guys do a lot of good in the Dundee area and over the years have suffered for it.  More than one of them has been arrested (charges usually dropped) for providing advocacy services for those claimants who have been sanctioned or targeted by the DWP, often unfairly.


Offline BernieTeyze

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Re: Sometimes you do not know how lucky you are
« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2017, 08:57:42 AM »
They sent my Adele to the job centre to ask why she couldn't look for a job..Then sent her to somewhere 30+ miles away to assess her for pip..She couldn't lift her hands above her head xx then the womans asking her to do all sorts del told her where to go n said she was using her energy to cook some dinner later not flipping dance. She swears to this day the woman stunk of alcohol and that's what made her throw up. My daughter has Leaukemia..It's incurable..They awarded her the LOW rate upped it to MIDDLE rate on appeal..To add insult to injury they told her to get a taxi to the interview and they would reimburse her, when she asked for her reimbursement they said they would send it..This is the money she was using to live off.

That anorexic woman died in the past couple of weeks as they cut her benefits for non attendance. She didn't have any heating in her house as she was on prepayment meters.

I smile when I hear about these scroungers, believe me when I tell you the real scroungers know how to play the system and receive every penny they are 'entitled' to. Don't even start me off on people forced into jobs on zero hours contracts..Don't even think Jeremy will be able to sort it should that day ever come.

If anyone ever gets stuck with benefit claims and enquiries,the site to go on is called Benefits and Work. Join them you will get all the help and support you need

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