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The Horror's Of Universal Credit.

Discussion in 'Benefits' started by Robinredbreast, Aug 14, 2018.

  1. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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    Hi, I had to apply for Universal Credit on the 25th July, because I was critically ill in hospital and I don't get sick pay from my employer ( zero hour contract and under the monetary quota). I have been for a work interview, and then I had to go for a work commitments interview the next day, which was frustrating, depressing, demoralizing and dehumanizing. I have submitted online, 2 'fit note's' as the word's 'sick note' isn't used anymore. then it has to be taken to the Job Centre to verify it is correct and seen by the agent.
    Today, I was supposed to get a telephone interview call from the the commitments agent at 10.40, no call, I waited and waited by my mobile, then at 11am a call came, no one there and then the same again a couple of minutes later, it said private number. So now I am panicking, so I go onto my journal and write 4 messages. Then I ring the 0800 number,but they do not take enquiries about Universal Credit. So what do I do? I caught a bus, luckily I don't live far away. Walked into the Job Centre and spoke to a person about what had happened, then another person and then another one, who poked their nose in. Now, my commitment agent, was in an hourly meeting, from 11 finish at 12 pm, then lunch until 1pm. Trying to get through to these muppets was exasperating. The women, who took over, said, my telephone agent, could of rung me at 11, but I said, he was probably in the meeting by then and I was previously told it would take 20 minute's on the phone. I said it doesn't add up. I asked a couple of more questions ( also they don't ring land line phones it has to be a mobile and if you haven't got a mobile you will have to buy one). I told the woman her tone was very condescending and as I don't know what is going on, that is why I am asking questions. I got upset,but was feeling angry inside, so I said I would wait just outside the department, the woman, went back to her claimant and then asked me back in and she apologised for being 'rude' and was then as nice a pie'. She gave me my agent's direct number which I rang at 1.10pm, no reply, so I left a message. He rang back, and when I told him what went on this morning, he said he rang at 10.30 ( I said I DID NOT get a call from you. he said not to worry about it and how is the work search going ? !! I said pardon ?.....................do you know who you are talking to as I have 2 fit/sick notes, he said sorry, as he see's so many people and I said that doesn't help the claimant you're actually talking to. I told him I didn't want another telephone interview and I would come in, somehow. Now I have an appointment on 29th August with the same agent.
    They treat you with such indifference, no matter what your circumstance's are. I am still biting the bit and trying to calm myself. Such an awful experience, from the start, if I did all those things, I would be sanctioned in some way. If anyone has to get Universal Credit, I wish anyone who applies for UC, all the luck in the world. To top the encounter off, I was given a small leaflet, which read :- Tell us what you think, regarding feedback and thoughts on my experience today. Which I will gladly do.

    Edited by mod.
     
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    #1 Robinredbreast, Aug 14, 2018 at 2:17 PM
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 14, 2018
  2. Juicyj

    Juicyj Type 1 · Moderator
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    Wow @Robinredbreast that sounds an awful experience :( really sorry to hear you had to go through all of that to claim UC. I am self employed so effectively get nothing if I am ill, fortunately I haven't needed to take a day off yet (and hopefully never will have to either).

    I am sorry I have don't have any pearls of wisdom except to give you a virtual hug and hope you can find the words to complain about this, maybe copy Theresa May into your letter too.

    Best wishes J
     
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  3. zand

    zand Type 2 · Expert

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    Words fail me! So sorry you had to go through this RRB
     
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  4. Metabolism_Boss

    Metabolism_Boss Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I'm sorry to say that from the people I know who have been through this, what you have experienced is very common. My sister worked all her life and was made redundant 18 months before she was due to retire. She became so upset with the way she was spoken to, that she stopped attending and lost the money she was entitled to. I hope things get better for you, but if not start looking for advice on how to tackle a system that is all too often stacked against you. Maybe get an appointment with Citizen's Advice, by the time those good people can fit you in, you may need them.

    Edited by Mod
     
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    #4 Metabolism_Boss, Aug 14, 2018 at 3:13 PM
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 14, 2018
  5. mo53

    mo53 Type 2 · Expert

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    @Robinredbreast I just wanted to say how sorry I am that you have had this experience. I hope when you get your interview at the end of August that this is resolved and you are able to get some money. Hugs.
     
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  6. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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    Thanks @Juciyj, I used to be self employed 20 months ago. I decided to email Theresa May :rolleyes:
     
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    #6 Robinredbreast, Aug 14, 2018 at 5:40 PM
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2018
  7. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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    Many thanks x
     
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  8. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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    Citizen's Advice helped me fill out the form and how your sister was treated was despicable :mad: As I am on my own, with no partner, but have a daughter living at home who is doing an apprenticeship, I have to do it, I have no choice, but it really get's me down and trying to recover as well is exhausting, both mentally and physically.
    Many thanks x
     
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  9. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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    Thank you Zand.
     
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  10. ickihun

    ickihun Type 2 · Master

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    My god is this what this country has turned into.
    Making the ill even sicker with their bureaucracy and mental anguish. They are a disgrace.
    So ESA is done under Universal Credit now?
    Surely the admin staff would find it less work. What is there to process? A fitnote.

    Oh I know what it is. You're a NEW clamaint. You have to be checked out incase you turn out to be one of the past fraudsters who have claimed when they weren't entitled. Their dishonesty and costs have rebounded on genuine claimants who need a payment to buy food and keep a roof over their heads. Whilst they are unfit to work.

    I bet you've paid thousands into the taxman pot.
    As they seem to be persecuted the most. Not allowed so much as you've paid tax this year. (Contributory ESA).
    We couldn't get much help for over a year due to partners work ethic. Paying of school meals on very very low income and nieve to a thing called PIP and DLA.
    I mind field to people who have never claimed for anything before. Working for every penny needed to cover all living expenses.

    I was put on partners claim and ended up entitled to just under £25 a week to cover all my expenses. No money for bus fares to get to Dr's appointments or hospital commitments.
    And that was only after he received more money on passing his tribunal appeal.

    I feel for you and your rubbish treatment. I have to call every 2wks to remind them to pay me. As there's a gremlin on my claim which only has to be made in the interim of him having to appeal again as the assessment wasnt mentally health orientated.

    Mental health disabilities are ignored in England. He applied for PIP when he couldnt keep his job after a breakdown and couldn't care for himself like normal or lead a normal life.... he failed their point requirements due to his pride.
    He's put off claiming again.... in fact he's not capable but I'm having to help him when kids are in school. When I'm not in bed ill or totally exhausted, which isnt very often.
    I don't think he'll ever apply for PIP again. It was too soon after all the trauma he experienced. If it wasn't for 2 lovely men recommended by MIND he would have taken to the streets away from the whole trauma of it all. He was damaged and needed help.

    We still don't feel he will be understood by DWP. They just don't recognise mental health disabilities. Unless it has a name. Post traumatic stress and adjustment disorder on top of anxiety with depression just isn't a name they recognise for ESA. It seems, unless you appeal. Maybe.
    The man has suffered and still does everyday but ESA like to add to his anguish.
    The amount of tax we have collectively paid over the years is enough to finance the whole job centre office in our City. Hundreds of thousands. :(
     
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    #10 ickihun, Aug 14, 2018 at 5:55 PM
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 14, 2018
  11. Resurgam

    Resurgam Type 2 (in remission!) · Expert

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    When my son was out of work he was told he had to ring a number - it was answered almost at once, by a robot and then he was put in a queue and the phone rang and rang, but all the time was costing him money - he never did get through to whoever it was, but it cost him loads of money to stay in the queue from 8 o'clock each morning. He went back to the office and was told they could do nothing until he had made the phone call - just keep trying.
    Great way to stop people claiming the benefits they are entitled to I thought.
    His wife is disabled, but in the past has been told that she no longer qualifies for a mobility car as she has recovered from the incurable irreversible damage to her leg and can walk again.
    It seems that there is nothing they will not do in order to stop paying benefits.
     
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  12. therower

    therower Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    @Robinredbreast . I’m so sorry and f****** annoyed that you’ve had to endure such a torrid time.
    Who the hell do these people think they are? I hope that you are able to look at the bigger picture of life and put this miserable situation in it’s place.
    I hate, loathe and detest bullies, that’s all these people are. They genuinely believe they are “the law “.
    You are a far greater person, with more compassion and greater worth than any of them.
    Stay strong and you will succeed.
    Hope things pick up tomorrow and you have a better day than today.
     
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  13. lucylocket61

    lucylocket61 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Just a reminder that food banks are there, many of them are not run by the Trussell trust, although they get all the publicity, so they may have a wider criteria for helping. They often also have links to advisors and mental health advocates.
     
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  14. ally1

    ally1 Type 2 · Expert

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    I am so sorry you had to suffer like that.
    I have heard this so many times. It's a disgrace.
    At the moment I am on esa, but I do know roughly around december/January that my area, anyone on esa has to apply for universal credit. Quite frankly I am petrified. I have to start all over like new claimed ts. That's includes allying for council tax and housing benefit. I belong to a esa/universal credit, I have found through that site, using the benefit calculator, that I will end up £72 per week worse off. I will have to send fit notes in. Bloody stupid to be honest as surely as I am on esa already, it should be transfered but no.
    Also I know new claims can be a minimum of 6 weeks before any money is issued. Also, that applies 6 weeks with housing benefit and council tax. So I am trying my best to put whatever few pence I can save to at least pay my rent. I don't want to be evicted because of the dawn stupid universal credit.
     
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  15. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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    This system, Universal Credit, is despicable and they are like vulture's picking on the bones of the people who really need help and support through a very tough time. Even though I showed them my hospital discharge paper, it meant absolutely nothing, I felt like a low life sponger.
    I would love to see Universal Credit regulated in some way, like Ofsted, Offcom do............ but who is going to regulate the government ? :rolleyes: :(

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/oct/02/heidi-allen-tory-mp-theresa-may-universal-credit
     
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  16. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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    A food bank was mentioned to me by a lovely lady at the council who advised me on a few more things and the food bank is in a church I know of. It is mainly tin foods, no fresh foods. It's a real life saver for so many.
     
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  17. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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    You can get a 'run on' for Housing costs and also support for Council tax, but this is separate and not part of Universal Credit. Any wages paid to the claimant in the run up to applying for Universal Credit, will get taken out of their money, when they get it. I didn't earn a great amount in June and July, but other's could have large chunks of their well earned money taken into account.
     
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  18. zand

    zand Type 2 · Expert

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    Yes totally agree with you. In the past the benefit system was abused by some. I don't see why genuine people should have to suffer because of the fraudsters. It makes me so angry.
     
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  19. lucylocket61

    lucylocket61 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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  20. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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    I have always been a good saver and I have money in my bank , which is helping me over the 5 to 6 weeks until I get Universal payment. I didn't expect my small savings to be used like this, but thank goodness I can, as some people have absolutely no money at all, or are in debt with nothing for a rainy day. I did refuse an advanced payment.
     
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