Hi everyone, yesterday I had to attend my interview at the job centre after being awarded the bog standard benefit. For the last 10 years I have been working on a voluntary basis as part of the previous governments getting back into work scheme. This work has been good for my morale, but sometimes my health has suffered as I pushed myself. At the moment, after an extended period of time off due to my illness I've just gone back, managing about 3 hours per week doing admin work at a local surgery. I've previously been employed all my life, from having a Saturday job. The work I do is well tailored to my condition, I'm able to work as and when I can manage and the staff give me enormous support, I love being there.
I was told yesterday by the job centre advisor, that this new benefit will only be paid for a year, so within that time I need to be in paid work or be looked after by my husband, no more means testing or benefit will be allowed after next June!!!! I was distraught, I thought I would carry on as I was during the year, try to improve if I could, and then go through the assessment process again. How on earth do I go from struggling to do 3 hours work to making enough money to cover my benefit???? I use my benefit money to pay for my medical certificate to fund all my medication and for my shopping.
The powers that be say if my husband works full time he can pay for me, but why should he and what if he resents that?? What if that puts a strain on his health and our marriage?? At the moment I'm working in Mr. Camerons NHS for nothing...in return, he'll abadon me after June.
Yes I can attend the well meaning workshops and training courses, but I'm perfectly capable of providing a CV, what I can't do is promise someone I can turn up for work everyday....I wish I could. After all this time and effort I might have to leave a workplace I love and thrive in, to try something I have no idea how to cope with, or stay in this workplace and receive no financial help at all.