Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Job Centre Plus Complaints-The First Sequal

Job Centre Plus Complaints Updates

I'd like to update you on my 'progress' with the Job Centre Plus. Incase you are one of the many having problems with the Job Centre Plus, I hope to try and offer tips that might be of help as I try and sort out my problems with this place. Now I say 'progress' as while I have tried some new avenues for my complaints, and some helpful contacts have being made (more on that coming up) the Job Centre Plus are still denying they have done anything wrong with my JSA. What a cheek. A very big freaking cheek. In fact, they have given so many big cheeks. But before I go on further about their big cheeks, here's the contact update. As I said in the earlier post, I was contacting M.r Andrew Rosindell to outline my complaints to him about the Romford JCP, the JCP in general and the DWP. Well M.r Rosindell had replied to me (actually very quick, only because of post being so slow I have only just recieved it) regarding these complaints.
I was pleased with M.r Rosindell's response, he outlined his understanding of my complaints about the Job Centre Plus and the Department of Work and Pensions, and he stated that he would make contact with Ian Duncan Smith, who is head of the Department of Work and Pensions, to make clear his concerns about what I had contacted him about. M.r Rosindell said that he would contact me once, M.r Smith has replied to his message, to let me know what he has to say on the matter. Now, whatever comes from this contact with Ian Duncan Smith, and hopefully he can offer something helpful, M.r Rosindell has already made more helpful steps on the issue in one letter, then the DWP or the Job Centre Plus have in the years I have being in contact with them. He has also shown far more understanding, quickly. So thank you M.r Rosindell.

Now the next development began when I tried, once again to call JCP Romford, on Tuesday 15th May 2012. All through the day I tried to get through to Romford JCP, without any luck. Then at last, at 4pm I got through to the reception at the Romford branch. Their was, according to the man on the over end, no JCP staff available to take my call, so he would get them to ring me back. Oh-oh, I don't usually get rang back by JCP. And guess what? Yeah, I'm sure you got it, I got no call back that day. So I planned to try again the next day. But before I got the chance, the post arrived which contained not one but two, letters from the DWP. Could it be they had looked into my complaints after the letters I had sent to JCP, and they were answering them? Could of been, but no it wasn't.
Here's what my packages contained.
Envelope one had two documents from H&M Revenue and Customs, stating details about my JSA claim so far. Then over in the second envelope we had a formal set letter (as in not a groveling apology admitting their bad service, and JCP's) which stated that their had been a recent change in my JSA claim. A recent change?? I have been off JSA for months! Then I found attached, was a cheque for just over £15.00. This was confusing. While I was grateful for this sudden outburst of money, and this something was better then nothing, what the DWP owed me was more closer to £500. Time to ring them up (again). It took nearly 5 minutes to be connected to the DWP (actually a new quick record I think) and off I went expressing my confusedment (not a real word) to the man on the phone. Turns out, that what had been sent to me was the money owed from back in February, according to them just before my benefit was stopted. I tried to understand this, and pondered over it for sometime but I just couldn't work out how,they arrived at this time. Then the man on the phone, explained that the Job Centre Plus had, all these months later after I was thrown off my JCP, only just emailed them to say my claim had been stopped earlier on, just before they sent out the letter. Thanks for that JCP, as that would of helped my JCP claim loads (sarcasm) seeing as that meant DWP had not had details of my account been closed yet. This service from JCP is just getting worse by the day. So back to the JCP hotline as I needed to once again see if my complaints letter had been answered and ask them what the (word removed) their doing. I rang them up explaining I wanted to see the status of my complaints (all million of them). The guy on the phone informed me that their was not an avaliable staff member to talk with me about my claim (here we go again), so when one was available could they ring me back. They could yes, if they actually did. I expressed that if perhaps someone could actually ring me back this time, that would be ace. I gave them an hour (tip when ringing JCP-even if they say their going to ring you back, don't take their word for it). I was surprised (as 

in thoughts of miracles floated through my mind) when JCP called back.  

Victor Meldrew Pictures, Images and Photos
I Don't Believe It!

Hold the front page though, will they have a helpful conclusion to my complaints? The lady who rang me back, I recognised her voice, I think we had spoken on the phone before, and I think she sounded like the lady mentioned who's head of a department at JCP (and has answered previous complaints letters from me), and was one who at least talked to customers a little better then many JCP staff. The lady said that the person was on some leave who was dealing with my complaint but she said she had rang them at home for me about the issues I had raised, and she would be booking me in to see some one about my complaints (they are taking me seriously now? Better a couple years late then not at all, eh?). I thanked her for this, and tried to keep calm when she was going over with me why I had been taken of JSA and happened to mention that I was taken of not by an error from JCP, they were in the right. Excuse me I'll just be a second.

Aaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

I tried to explain that no, in fact it was their mistake. Well she wasn't agreeing on this one, and after a couple of minutes discussion she said, as she had also looked at my case, it was her advice that in order to try and get the money they own me I should just do a rapid reclaim. That thing I had expressed was not the correct solution for a valid reason, which had been mentioned in my complaints notes. The member of staff did agree with me after, about how that may not be the applicable action to take and that I can explain this to the person I was booked to see.
So that is where some progress has been made of sorts. Whether or not, JCP were going to answer my latest letter, if I had not rang them up, I would of heard anything more on the matters, I don't know. I'll give them the benefit (unlike they often do for people) of the doubt and say they had been looking into my account and were going to contact me once they had finished.
I'll keep you posted, including how the meeting at the Job Centre goes on when I attend the appointment they have set for me, and also any updates from this man 

(in real life Andrew Rosindell is a lot less fuzzy, sorry to M.r Rosindell and anyone else who may be offended about the photo that isn't doing M.r Rosindell justice, just at short notice it was the best I could get.)


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