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Mid update on working links

January 21, 2013


I’ve not updated for a while, not really had the time, as Since I last posted I’ve been trying to start up a business with my partner and devoting all my time and energy to that end. Looking for part time stuff to help support it while looking for ways to fund it, and get bits I really need. As many of you know I’ve been Claiming income based JSA now since October-November-ish 2011 We applied for a budget loan end of December 2012, knowing we wouldn’t get it before Xmas, but were hopeful it’d be in the new year so we could get some proper cloths for interviews, some safety kit for painting, redecorating the house damaged by fire and replace a broken washing machine that’s being just about kept going but wont last much longer. We got turned down because apparently we haven’t been claiming JSA for 26weeks. Yes that’s right folks apparently there isn’t 26weeks in a whole year. Someone in london job-centre where the forms from Devon got sent can’t do maths! someone never told them a full year is 52 weeks! at this present point I must have been stuck in the mud pit that is JSA for  for 63 weeks!

Now my next gripe this week is Working links Torquay Devon.
(I want it to be known that mostly I am Happy with working links and the team, they have been and continue to be a huge help.)
However on the 17/01/2013 around 15.15pm I felt threatened, intimidated, trapped and humiliated over something that should have been simple and straightforward. The manager at Torquay working links after being shown our bus tickets of £7.40 each and never having had any issue with them before verbally corned both myself and my partner over some really stupid issues over a bus ticket, I did feel she was Overly aggressive in the way in which she went about it. she seemed unable to understood that it takes us 3 hours to get to Torquay and 3 hours back, told us that maybe we should go to Plymouth, which is actually further a way, costs more and takes 4+ hours due to 2 never meeting buses each way, its X81 to x80 or X81 to 93, they always just miss each other and your left for an hour waiting for the next one, such is the chaos that is buses in rural Devon, and neither myself or my partner can drive. After our being stuck in a corner of her literally making a drama in front of staff and other customers over 2 bus tickets, she tried to give us travel passes for stagecoach until I pointed out we’re with first Devon and no other bus goes our way, She then asked who we were there to see. We told her our adviser for going self employed, We told her of what we were doing, tried to tell her about the money you can actually make from it and that our site had just gone live as of 15/1/2013, So then she asked us to prove it and show her the website ( for the business we are trying to start, Which I did, which for some reason only half loads on w-links computers, then after asking us to show her she seemed totally uninterested once it came up and started loading and she sat at a desk no where near the computer that was loading the site, (I couldn’t show her our facebook because for obvious reasons that’s blocked.) she then went off saying its not good enough and she tried to make us stay and job hunt and caused us to miss getting to the job centre while it was still open in totnes because the drama she created, and holding on to our tickets made us miss the one bus that would have gotten us there in time.
I have never felt so threatened and humiliated in my life, not even while I was bullied at school! I broke down into tears once I left the building, My Partner was left feeling very angry and humiliated. It felt like everything we’ve been doing and working for in the past month and a half was for nothing. We had left feeling very positive after seeing out adviser, ready for the next stage of our business and hopeful of maybe being able to sign off soon, and even hoping to hear back from some part time jobs I’ve applied for to help us along the way. But after just trying to get our travel refunded because the money we hold back just to get to working links comes out of our electric bill pot, and the drama we got from a manager just for wanting that back, we ended up leaving feeling sick, upset, humiliated, shaken up and VERY angry, because of one manager who seemed to be on a pick on people at random day.
I have no issue with job searching there, even though we do it on our own back at home and at job-clubs. What I have issues with is the attitude she confronted us with from the moment of starting to talk to us when all we were asking was for our bus fares and to get to Totnes Job centre plus before 5pm to ask some key questions about some of the rules we need to worry about.
This is getting ridicules! How are they helping us get back into work if all their doing is kicking us more while we are down and actively PREVENTING us from getting back into work?

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