Moving from Income Support to Job Seekers' Allowance

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Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Hi Pam

It feels to me as if this was "sneaked in" a bit. I wonder if the thought of everyone with a child aged seven to 11 was just too many people to transfer at once?

Posted on: September 22, 2009 - 10:04am
harissa

Unfortunately all the changes have caught the job centres themselves on the hop. The staff have been given so much conflicting information, it is impossible to get a straight answer from any of the them. My local Job centre has had to draft in twice the staff, many of whom are inadequately trained, to handle all the extra admin, with the result that there is insufficient office space to actually see the customers any more. Access for someone like me (deaf/hard of hearing) has now been rendered impossible. My last WFI was a joke as I was unable to lipread over the telephone - not that they listened to me when I explained the problem.

It is a total fiasco and not very confidence inspiring.

Posted on: September 22, 2009 - 10:50am
mickey

Thank you Sally.
Will check back soon.
I also want to check another thing - because I get free school meals and my boys live 2 miles or more from their secondary school, they are intitled to free bus passes, which they were issued with last week, apparently this has been the case since Sept last year, great that no one told me! :(, been struggling to pay for my number one sons bus fares for 4 years at £8.00 a week, & then my number two son started secondary school this term.
Am I correct in saying that if I work & get working tax credit I no longer am intitled to free school meals or free school travel ??. If I get max working tax credit then I could be entitled to free travel? how would I know if Im intitled to max working tax credit. Government say they are trying to stop child poverty, but I would be worse off to work as I would be expected to pay £18.00 per week bus fares.
Its just not fair to force us back to work, isnt it hard enough having to play two parents?

Posted on: September 22, 2009 - 11:04am
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

if you get working tax credit then you lose the school meals but the transport situation varies with Education Authority. For example, where I live you get free travel if you live more than three miles from the school, regardless of income, and if you live less than three miles away then even on Income Support you have to pay. Give the Education office a ring, Mickey, it will be in the phone book

Posted on: September 22, 2009 - 12:19pm
Sally C

Hi alisoncam – thanks for your comments. If you’d like to find out a little more about the government’s stance on fostering, check out these links which you might find informative:
http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Parents/Adoptionfosteringandchildrenincare/Fostering/DG_10027536
http://www.cpag.org.uk/cro/tax-credits/foster_carers_is_and_js.htm
:) Sally C

Posted on: September 23, 2009 - 3:23pm
Sally C

Hi again mickey, ok so I’ll go through your questions one by one and hope that I can make some sense!

With regards to claiming DLA for your son, before I go on to explain various things, I was wondering if you have applied for the claim and if yes, what was the response? Generally, DLA does not cover people who suffer migraines, but there have been a few cases with successful appeals. I’ll await to hear more from you before I go on, but you might find this link useful:
http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/DisabledPeople/FinancialSupport/DG_10011731

With regards to Carer’s Allowance, what Louise has said in the other post is pretty much correct. I will respond in more detail however on that particular post.

For the time being, I wanted to respond to your worries over JSA and tax credits.

So, saying that you are unable to claim Carer’s Allowance and are therefore moved from Income Support to JSA:
· You will be moved onto JSA at some point from October 2009 as your youngest is above 10 years old
· Your WFIs should be taken up to quarterly meetings the year before you are moved onto JSA (has this happened?)
· You get a letter 8 weeks before you are transferred to JSA
· When claiming JSA you can have a break from signing on (but still receive the benefit) if there is a domestic emergency, for example if your son is very ill with a migraine. However, this is up to your adviser’s discretion, so I suggest that if this happens you record all correspondence with your GP for evidence
· When claiming JSA, you are able to work under 16 hours per week, but you must explain to your personal advisor exactly how much you earn and how many hours per week you work, as it may affect your claim. Do remember though that if another job comes along which is 16 hours (or more, depending on how many hours you want to work), you may have to give up the job which is below 16 hours per week.
· You do not have to work full time as a single parent. You can state that you only want to work 16 hours per week, even if there are no part time jobs in your area. This is your right and it should not affect your claim. When you meet with your personal advisor explain the amount of hours you want to work (anything from 16 hours per week, but not below 16)
· Child Tax Credit will still be in place while claiming JSA

Moving off JSA into work:
· Whilst in work, you will still be able to claim Child Tax Credit – for more info call the Tax Credit Helpline on 0845 300 3900
· If you get a job which is 16 hours or more, and therefore move off JSA, then you are entitled to Working Tax Credits. The amount you are entitled to depends on your circumstance i.e. how many children you have, your income, and your childcare costs
· If claiming Working Tax Credits, you may be eligible to get help with childcare costs – up to 80% if using registered childcare (but not a family member, even if registered)

This is a really helpful factsheet with lots of info about tax credits:
http://www.gingerbread.org.uk/portal/page/portal/Website/For%20lone%20parents/single-parents-information-online/Factsheets/Benefits%20and%20tax%20credits%20if%20you%20work%2016%20hours%20or%20more%20a%20week

I am going to find out a little more about what you can do when you are in employment and there is a domestic emergency – it’s not quite clear yet but I’ll find out and get back to you ASAP.

What Louise says about meals and bus fares is right, and I agree that you should contact your Education Authority to find out more.

Regarding NHS free treatment, you might be able to receive some free treatment when working and claiming Working Tax Credits, but it depends on your income. This link might be useful to you:
http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/index/family_parent/health/help_with_health_costs.htm

I hope this helps a little... I'll get back to you again with more info very soon.

Sally C :)

Posted on: September 23, 2009 - 4:06pm
mickey

Thanks Sally for all your info, I have tried to claim dla before & turned down, dont remember ever being given a reason. I think that everyone should be assessed on indiviual issues, I dont feel that we were. Lots of people dont fully or understand migraine. Migraines totally disable my son, to the point where he has wet himself, obviously apart from his illness he is a normal boy, but when he has an attack he cannot do anything for himself, he is so confused and disorientated that he has vomited in the bed, the list goes on and on, I cant leave him alone. Vomiting and pain can last for 10+ hours and its not just the attack it the after effect, feeling exhausted, sore tummy from vomiting, dizzy & throbbing head. So hes attacks usually last fully for 3 days at a time. I dont ever know when an attack is going to happen, usually when hes at school & I get called to him, so he is always on my mind I dont drive & that in itself is a real struggle.

Posted on: September 24, 2009 - 11:22am
Sally C

Hi everyone - regarding studying, Income Support and JSA, there have been a lot of questions/confusion. I have set up a new topic on this matter which will hopefully clarify some issues. Have a look at the topic if you're still not sure about it, and feel free to post any questions or share any experiences you might have. Thanks, Sally C

Posted on: September 24, 2009 - 2:01pm
harissa

Here is a news article about this
http://uk.news.yahoo.com/21/20091026/tuk-single-parents-forced-to-hunt-jobs-6323e80.html

Gingerbread's input into the debate is most welcome and is pretty representative of the experiences of all of my friends in this situation.

Posted on: October 26, 2009 - 9:23am
Ali D

Today it's been announced that for single parents the move from Income Support to Job Seekers' Allowance is going to be 'family friendly', where you can choose part time work, term time only etc. This is good news, just wish someone would inform the people behind the desks at the Job Centre. :) I had an appointment to move from IS to JS, went down for it and was told yes I did have an appointment but it had been re-arranged for Monday (last Monday)! What they really meant was they had made a mistake and didn't want to admit it. So went again on the Monday. The girl was very nice but completely ignored everything I said to her. She asked me about what sort of hours I was looking for so told her between 16 and 30. I also told her I had heart valve disease which did affect what I could do to some degree which is why I re-trained in Admin instead of looking for a Nursery Nursing job like I did previously. She put Admin down on the form but wanted a second choice (like they do) so she suggested putting Nursery work down. I told her there was no point as it was too much for me running around a Nursery all day looking after kids.She tried all ways to get me to put that down but in the end we opted for I.T work such as data inputting. She printed out two sheets for me of jobs to look at, so when I got a chance to have a look at them I realised they were both 40 hours a week, one had a closing date of the same day (whoops, too late!) and the other was miles away and took two buses. I worked out the time to get there and back because my eldest daughter does a similar thing and I'd have to leave the house at 7 in the morning to get to the place of work for 9 and then I wouldn't get back in the house until after 7 at night! Now that's really family friendly and stress free! :lol:

I don't think I'm being unreasonable asking for an office job between 16 and 30 hours. I mean I've found three which I've applied for myself, I'm just waiting to hear back. All of them within a few miles.

So my situation at the moment is I'm sitting here trying to get through to the Job Centre on the phone because I was told to go down this Tuesday and every other Tuesday after. Yet my attendance arrangements have on 26.10.09 which is today. And when I do go I have to tell her why I didn't go for the 40 hour a week job that'll take me two buses to get too. Probably get sanctioned or whatever it's called before I've even signed on for the first time. Good job I have a sense of humour! :)

Posted on: October 26, 2009 - 10:46am
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Hello Ali D

A perfect example of bureaucracy gone mad! I guess we have to have our wits about us when presented with these "lists" (difficult when you have been through a frustrating "interview") You have done everything you can and have even applied for three jobs so no-one could accuse you of not being proactive. I sometimes wonder if that is what makes people get back into work even quicker than anticipated....to avoid having to go through the system any longer.

Posted on: October 27, 2009 - 9:08am
Sally C

Hiya Ali D - goodness gracious what a palaver! Indeed Louise, I totally agree with your comment about it being 'bureaucracy gone mad'. It seems just so ridiculous that, as a busy mum, who is looking for work in her own time, you have to go into JCP as a matter of course and do things to tick boxes, which in reality just don't make a difference as the jobs are totally inappropriate anyway! Instead, you could be getting support in looking at local employers who are family-friendly, or at employers like local schools or the NHS who generally have term-time jobs.

Saying this though, don't worry about being sanctioned - the part-time admin roles you are applying for are TOTALLY reasonable, not just by my standards, but importantly by the rules the Department of Work and Pensions set i.e. that single parents do not have to work more than 16 hours per week if they choose. The JCP just aren't making this clear it seems. I've responded to your other posts here: http://groups.onespace.org.uk/viewtopic.php?f=24&t=482 that looks into travel time etc, hope this helps a little.

Sally C :)

Posted on: October 28, 2009 - 12:35pm
Claire-Louise

Hi AliD
Wow that seems quite ludicrous! What I can't understand is that they want to force all these single parents back to work and yet I find it really quite hard to find a part time job that fits in with school holidays and school pick ups. What do they expect us to do - have all our children become latch key kids once again?!
Do they eve consult the appropriate people before coming up with these bright ideas I ask myself?!
Cheers C-L

Posted on: October 29, 2009 - 6:22pm
Kath

Hi!

 

I'm new to the group & this discussion & am really looking forward to 'meeting' you all!

Does anyone have any experience in challenging having to find work because suitable childcare could not be found?  I will be affected by the changes in October.  I home educate my 7 yr old so he is in my care 24/7.  I would not consider his going from one toddler group to another & spending all day solely with toddlers as suitable, especially if it means that we'll have to forego home ed groups that we currently attend because I have to go to work.

I'd really appreciate hearing about other people's experiences in tackling the 'suitable' childcare issue & hearing about exactly what will be considered suitable, or not.

Cheers,

Kath

Posted on: April 19, 2010 - 7:39am
hazeleyes
DoppleMe

Hi Kath, welcome to One Space. I haven't got the answer I'm afraid. I am also changing to JSA in October, and I don't have anyone to look after my son either. I'm not quite in the same position as you, as he does attend school, but I'm really not looking forward to sending him to clubs, childminders or whatever. He has never done any of these things, and it is something that I'm really worried about.

There will be others along later who will be able to offer you help etc.

Take care

Alison

x

Posted on: April 19, 2010 - 10:54am
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Hello Kath

Great to welcome you here and thanks for your post.

I do not know the answer to your query offhand so I have emailed the Home Education Advisory Service and asked them if they have had experience of this. Let's see what they say......

Posted on: April 19, 2010 - 3:03pm
cuddles64

I am most distressed about the changes the government has made to full time single/divorced parents raising children. What ever happened to our country that's supposed to have freedom of choice/speach? In my situation, I have raised my kids from 1998 on my own. My eldest who is 20 yrs old, has moved away to live with his gf. However, I still have my 2 daughters who are both special needs. My eldest daughter was diagnosed with A.D.H.D when she was 6 yrs old and I was awarded carers allowance and D.L.A. Which was awarded at midle rate. Unfortunately, when she turned 16 last July this was all stopped, I protested and was then awarded lowest rate D.L.A but that doesn't include carers allwance. My youngest daughter has a statememnt of S.E.N. She attends a special needs school and travels by a taxi with an Escort.  My youngest has very poor social skills, behavioural and emotional problems and it was recognised that she has Emotional behaviour disorder and attachment issues, putting herself in vulnerable situations because of her emotional needs. I do not get any respite from my youngest daughter and I am constantly drained, hardly sleeping at night because of my stressful and worrying enviroment. I have no family on my side and my ex's family are vertually non existant. So I am soley the only person in my daughters lives. My youngest has NEVER been diagnosed with any underlying medical disorders or conditions, thus leaving the governemnt to force me to work. Recently there was some serious accusations made by my youngest daughter, with which Social services were informed and yet again they are now involved in our family. Because of my youngest daughter's behaioural problems, I am under severe stress and anxiety, the doctor now has signed me off for 3 mts of job searching. I feel the governement SHOULD not false parents out to work. It should be left to each individual to asssess their situation and if not in the right predicuament, should not work. Raising children is difficult at the best of times, but if like me, there is no family network support and the children have special needs, then these are much, much harder work , both emotionally and physically. My emtional and physical health is deteriarting because of the governemnt trying to force me to work, when my mind is constantly on my children and their needs, not the governemnts needs, who just want more money to line their pockets.

Lynda C.  Hampshire

Posted on: June 7, 2010 - 8:32pm
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Hello cuddles64

First of all, nice to meet you. Secondly, you sound worn out with everything you are coping with. When I saw that Social Services were now involved, my first thought was well I hope they can put some respite in place and make you a "family in need" that gets more help but it doesn't sound as if this is happening.

You also sound angry about the changes in the system that are putting extra pressure on parents to seek work outside the home. it sounds like the key to it for you might be getting that diagnosis for your youngest. This would at least give you exemption until she is 16. Please do go back to your GP and explore what can be done to achieve this. I know that professionals are unwilling to "label" a child but you need to find a way to get the help that you deserve.

Posted on: June 8, 2010 - 7:59am
Bella
DoppleMe

Hello,

Im a newly qualified nurse who cannot find a job during the day hours of 7am until around 8pm. I am willing to work 6 days a week but cannot work nights as my child is ten. I am willing to put him into a breakfast club (which he hates) and an afternoon club elsewhere, followed by a friend collecting him until I can get home.

 The only part time nhs job available (which is a few hours walk away) is for 97.5 hours a week.I cannot work these hours.

Im waiting to hear about when they demand I sign on fortnightly.

I have applied for ten jobs and had one interview only.

People say that there are always nurse jobs going. This is a falicy.I have trained for 4 years and just need a little help now. Apparently I can apply for help towards child care but will they pay it when the child care provider demands payment? Single parents cannot afford to lay out the monthly money.

 

We are not saying we WONT work, but just help to smooth the path a little, please.

B.

Posted on: July 22, 2010 - 3:54pm
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Hello Bella

The way the childcare system works is that you tell the Working Tax Credit people how much your ANNUAL childcare will be (that is when you work it out) and they pay you 80% of it back (up to a certain level) spread through the year. This means that you may be shelling out for summer holiday care that costs more than term time care but the money you receive comes in evenly, During term time you are therefore expected to put some money away for the holiday care......in that respect it might be better not to start work until the long summer holiday is over as then it is a full year to go till the next one!

Have you thought about a nursing agency that would just let you do, say, two shifts a week?

Posted on: July 22, 2010 - 4:39pm
Bella
DoppleMe

hi,

Thanks for advice.

I cant do agency work until I have fulfilled the nhs requirements of completing a programme of preceptorship or "steps". I have tried to work as an nhs auxillary nurse and do the "steps" but im over qualified. I have volunteered to work on a ward to get the "steps" done but that's not allowed either.

 

I will have another look and seek even further advice after the school hols have finished. there must be some way through this fog.

 

B.

Posted on: July 23, 2010 - 2:27pm
petal4

Hello, my name is Hayley, I'm 33 and have 2 children ages 11 & 2. I was just wondering how things now stand in terms of Income Support & Jobseekers allowance?

At my last "Back to work" focused interview I was told that now, as soon as your youngest child turns 5, income support changes to Jobseekers Allowance. This wasn't a problem as I intended to look for work as soon as my son started school anyway.

I was talking to a friend just 3 days ago who had just left her work focused interview and she reported that the changes would now be made when the youngest child is 1 year.

Is this really the case or has she got her facts mixed up? Also could you tell me if Jobseekers would provide the same amount of money as Income Support?

Thankyou.

Posted on: September 12, 2010 - 8:23am
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Hello petal4

There are all sorts of proposals out there and with a new goverment undertaking a welfare review, nothing is certain. The imminent change is that from this autumn, single parents whose youngest child is aged 7 are to be removed from Income Support and be given JSA instead, with some requirement to look for work, or be moving towards this. There are two sorts of JSA, income related and contribution based. If you have been on Income Support for a couple of years then you will not have accumulated any contributions, so you would be on income related. The amount is exactly the same as Income Support, your Child Tax Credit stays in place and so does your Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit. The thing that changes is that you are officially "unemployed and searching work".

We will all have to wait until the Government announces its plans before we know for certain what the future holds.

Posted on: September 12, 2010 - 8:37am
petal4

Thankyou for your response Louise, what you have said makes sense but I can't figure out why jobcentre plus are telling me something different, it's very confusing, it seems everyone I know who goes to these interviews are told something different and so nobody really knows where they stand.

Also, when my daughter was born in 1998, child tax credits wasn't really yet in place so I received Income support for her, when I had my son is 2007 I expected it to change so that I would receive Child tax credits for them both instead of Income Support. This was not the case, I was told that because I already had an exisitng child on Income Support that my new claim would also have to be for Income Support so that is what I've been getting since my son was born.I would however like to change over to child tax credits, could you please tell me how I can do this bearing in mind I'm not too good with using the phone.

 

Thankyou!

Posted on: September 12, 2010 - 9:29am
hazeleyes
DoppleMe

Hi Petal4. I have only just changed over from Income Support for my son, to Child tax credits, and he is now 8. I was told that it should change automatically, but was given forms in case it didn't!!! Jobcentre gave me my forms in August, and I received my letter last Friday to say it is switched over as from Tuesday.

If you don't feel comfortable using the phone, could someone ring on your behalf? Failing that, go to the jobcentre again,and request a form from your advisor, or simply wait until it is your time to switch from Income Support to Jobseekers. Sorry I have forgotten how old you said your son was? 5?

The switching over is a pain for me, as it now means (for me) two seperate days to collect money. Lord knows why they couldn't stick to the same day for both. I think they like rubbing us up the wrong way, hehe. It blinking works too, lol

Hope you're having a good day

x

Posted on: September 12, 2010 - 11:30am
petal4

Hi Alisoncam, thankyou for responding. I'm quite happy to fill in a form if I can do it that way without having to use the phone. I mentioned to the advisor at my last work focused interview that both my children still get income support rather than Child tax credits and she told me it would be my responsibility to get it changed. See what I mean about people getting told different things. I think I will pop into the jobcentre plus in the week and get some forms. My income support collection up to now has always been a Monday but I've recently had a letter stating that the way payments will be made are changing in October and my payments will be made fortnightly on a Friday. That has caused me enough confusion so I'm really hoping that when I eventually change over that they don't give me seperate days, that would be annoying.

 

My son is 2 but will be 3 on the 20th of this month.

I'm having a great day thanks, I hope you are too! :D

Posted on: September 12, 2010 - 12:00pm
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Hello petal4

That's some good info there from alisoncam.

You will indeed be told different things at the Job Centre about ages of children, the poor staff are totally confused with the different messages that come out to them. After the age seven thing, the next move was indeed supposed to be age five of youngest child, but this was a proposal and then the election happened.

Posted on: September 12, 2010 - 1:03pm
hazeleyes
DoppleMe

Hi Petal4. Wow, cannot believe your change over is only just happening, from weekly to fortnightly I mean. Am sure mine was last year. A word of warning, when it does change over, you will be short of money. Please don't do as I did, and borrow from them. A letter will be sent to you about the change over, and if you need to borrow etc. If you do feel you can't manage at that particular time, borrow from (I think it is the budget loan or crisis, cannot remember which one does it). They give you longer, whereas Income Support loan had to be paid back in 6 weeks, and it was a big wack of money each fortnight. Hope this makes sense for you Smile

Having an ok ish day thanks. Smile

x

Posted on: September 12, 2010 - 2:42pm
petal4

Thanks Louise, so does that mean the age "5" proposal was thrown out? What was decided at the election? Whatever happens I still intend to go to work when my son is 5 but I think it woud be ludricous to expect lone parents of a 1 year old to find work, my poor friend is really panicking about it.

Posted on: September 12, 2010 - 2:42pm
petal4

Thanks Alisoncam, I did as you say get an offer of a loan to cover the 5 days I would apparently struggle with and it does seem they take quite a lot in one go so I won't be taking them up on their offer.

Thankfully (because one week over x-mas I didn't withdraw) I am actually a week behind meaning that on Monday coming I will be collecting what I should have collected last Monday. Smile

Posted on: September 12, 2010 - 2:47pm
hazeleyes
DoppleMe

That's brilliant news Petal4 Smile

Posted on: September 12, 2010 - 3:38pm
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Hi Petal4

No it wasn't thrown out but I believe it just didn't get through all the stages to become law, to the best of my knowledge. Your friend has no need to panic (at least not yet Undecided) It will be up to the new government to decide what to do. I believe Ian Duncan Smith is doing the review. He has been asked by the Chancellor to find a way to cut the budget by a certain amount and I believe that we will hear more firm proposals before the end of the year.

Posted on: September 12, 2010 - 4:00pm
hazeleyes
DoppleMe

Hi all. I've been doing a quick scan at all these posts, and can't seem to find anything to my question I have.

I volunteer at a school, and have signed up for 2 maths courses. One started yesterday, finishes in December, and the other starts in January and runs for approx 18 weeks. I am still on IS, but am waiting to be switched over to JSA. I thought as I was doing some courses, I would be allowed to stay on IS until I'd finished. Just rang the Jobcentre Plus, and explained it, but she told me I would still be switched over to JSA very soon, but she has made a note of me starting first course as of yesterday.

Can anyone give me any info on this please?

Posted on: November 9, 2010 - 11:05am
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Hi alisoncam

I do not know the answer to this but I think the best bet would be to email our 1-2-1 money advice service, click here to go to the link

Posted on: November 9, 2010 - 11:44am
hazeleyes
DoppleMe

Thankyou Louise. I have just e.mailed them. It is very confusing isn't it. Not the link, but all the course business.

Posted on: November 9, 2010 - 12:40pm
hazeleyes
DoppleMe

An extremely quick response from the 1-2-1 money advise section Smile

Unfortunately because the course that I'm taking started after the 25th October, I will be switched over to JSA, but I guess the good news is, it shouldn't interfere with the 'being available to look for work'.

 

Posted on: November 9, 2010 - 6:10pm
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Glad you got a quick response, they really are good at what they do Laughing

It's great that you got it cleared up as well

Posted on: November 9, 2010 - 6:35pm
hazeleyes
DoppleMe

Just before Christmas, I received for the second time a claim form for Income Support. I did fill the first one out a month or so ago, can't remember exact month. Anyhow, since then I received letters confirming that my circumstances hadn't changed since I first applied 8 years ago, so IS would continue. Then I receive another form!!!! Have tried ringing them today to ask why another one has been sent, but they're not open until tomorrow. Do these departments know what they are doing? On second thoughts, don't answer this, hehe

Posted on: December 29, 2010 - 12:41pm
tiredmum
DoppleMe

Hi alisoncam

                 Be grateful you are not on js and ctc, it is a nightmare particularly right now.

I signed on on xmas eve and they told me the money had been released for payment on the 22nd so to expect it on xmas eve, ok went to the cash machine on xmas eve and yes there it was or so I thought, wrong, it was my ctc paid almost a week early as its a bank hol in Ireland today, consequence, I have overspent, not by loads but enough to matter dont get paid now till next wed ctc and then js on the wed after the 7th which is my next date to sign on!!!!!!!!!!

I have called ctc and asked why they didnt tell people, answer its on out automated message, my answer well no actually it only tells you that it will be paid early if you were due to be paid on mon or tues, oh sorry about that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted on: December 29, 2010 - 12:52pm
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

It really is bad that the payment systems are so unreliable. So many Bank Holidays do not help, I really think the four-day shutdown of everything this time has been a bit much.

I have no idea why you have got yet another form, alisoncam, as you say it seems that the right hand does not know what the left hand is doing!

Posted on: December 29, 2010 - 1:07pm
tiredmum
DoppleMe

Hi everyone

                Signed on again today, managed to turn up half an hour early as they had changed my time from 9.30am to 10.00am just for today, it was one of those longer appointments where you go through what you have done to look for work etc.

Have to say I didnt feel too well this morning, really bad headache which is very unusual for me, took a flu tablet thing so it eased a little, but walking in the jobcentre was an ordeal, it is full of people and I find that really difficult to deal with, the panic attacks kick in and I cant cope with being there, it sounds silly but its horrible.

Anyway, the guy was nice and said I have to go for an obligitory back to work interview in 2 weeks time, he then told me it was a group thing with 10 people, I told him straight away I cant do that, lucky for me he is a nice advisor so has booked a one to one in 2 weeks time with himself. What I need to pass on to you all is that if you are late for this appt you dont get a 2nd chance and will NOT be paid, no excuses are accepted, so this goes against everything they have said about flexibility if your children are poorly etc.

I really dont know how much longer I can face going to the jobcentre, I have to have my friend with me everytime I go as I just cant face going on my own. Does anyone else feel like this?

Posted on: January 7, 2011 - 2:55pm
hazeleyes
DoppleMe

Hi tiredmum. I'm not where you're at yet, just a matter of weeks now I think. I'm not looking forward to it at all, so I do know how you feel. I don't suffer with panic attacks or anything, but I do sympathise as it must be absolutely awful for you.

So, if your child is ill on the day for the interview in two weeks time, you have no one to look after them, are we supposed to take them with us, leave them on own, miss appointment, and in doing so, lose the benefits? This is all a total ruddy joke isn't it!!!

Posted on: January 7, 2011 - 3:11pm
tiredmum
DoppleMe

Hi alisoncam

                  Panic attacks or not it is the pits for anyone to go to the jobcentre, its just such an oppressing feeling in there, I cant really find the words to describe it.

Well thats what he told me, no excuses at all for missing the appt and you cannot be one min late either, thats fine as I am always early for everything, its one of my pet hates people being late.

It is as you say all a joke, prob is its not remotely funny xxx

Posted on: January 7, 2011 - 3:15pm
hazeleyes
DoppleMe

Hi tiredmum. Can you not do group things then? Sorry, but was wondering if that was the reason the fella is seeing you on your own?

Hope your headache is easier now. Perhaps it was the stress of the visit to the jobcentre that brought it on?

Posted on: January 7, 2011 - 3:21pm
Louise
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Sorry to hear you were feeling poorly, tired mum, I do think Job Centres are very stressful places and what I noticed last time I was there was that people do not talk to each other. You know like usually in a doctor's waiting room or on a bus, people chat, well not at the Job Centre.

Glad you got the one-to-one, I know that there are various seminars they can send you on at different stages. I have no experience of what they say if your child is poorly so I can't comment on that. My friend was told he would lose his benefit if he did not go to the group meeting, but he has no young children. In fact he had had a one to one meeting with the advisor the same day of the seminar so the advisor just ticked that he had been, as he had already outlined all his job seeking activities and shown him he had got a CV, etc. Try to bear in mind that it is a box-ticking exercise and you might not feel so affected personally by it. What I am saying is that the advisor has to be able to say that all claimants have attended various things, it is not that it is targeted against you personally.

Hope you are feeling better this afternoon Kiss I am always early for everything as well Wink as I get agitated at the thought of being late, so I am with you on that one

Posted on: January 7, 2011 - 3:55pm
tiredmum
DoppleMe

Hi alisoncam

                 I am fine with groups of people that I know or am comfortable with but cant do group things with people I dont know if that makes sense?

I`ve just had a bath, a good cry and a good think, some of my best thinking is done in the bathSmile I have come up with a plan of sorts, the place that gives us the donations of clothes, I am going to set up a meeting with them and see if they are remotely interested in opening up a shop here where I live. They pay for the rent and pay myself and my friend 16 hours on minimum wage, they in return get our expertise and enthusiasm to help people, so a sort of match funding. I see it as a seconds outlet type of shop where the customer benefits as does the company as at present they either burn the things they cant sell or they donate it to us to pass on to whoever we choose to, I would also like to run a food bank from the same premises.

I would love your opinions on this along with anyone elses, the negatives along with the positives please, I can take the negatives very wellSmile

Louise yes I know they are only tick boxing but its also nice that I do seem to have an advisor that understands, I am okish now thank you, headache has eased so possibly stress related.

Posted on: January 7, 2011 - 5:47pm
Anna
Parenting specialist
DoppleMe

Wow tiredmum, what a day!  I love your fantastic idea, I look forward to hearing about how your plan goes, it sounds quite exciting, a new enterprise!

I am rushing now, but hope you have a good weekend, catch up on Monday Smile

Posted on: January 7, 2011 - 6:12pm
sparklinglime
DoppleMe

Tiredmum, that sounds like a brilliant idea.  I'm sure they would have access to grants to help as well.

Good luck and my very best wishes.

Posted on: January 7, 2011 - 7:25pm
hazeleyes
DoppleMe

I think it is a fantastic idea Tiredmum. Go for it. Smile

Posted on: January 7, 2011 - 7:33pm
tiredmum
DoppleMe

Thank you all,Laughing

I would love to have the guts to start up my own business doing this but it means risking everything which I just cant do, but this would be the next best thing and it is totally derisked from a financial point of view for my friend and I, getting quite excited now.

The easy part is the idea, the hard part is selling it to them, although they do already have a social conscience which does make things a lot easier in my opinion, also they know what we do and are extrememly supportive, yes we have another delivery coming on MondayLaughing

Posted on: January 7, 2011 - 8:11pm