Down And Out In Liverpool
One Man's Attempts to Find Work On Merseyside
By Rob Saven 1/3/2011
In my attempts fo find work, I got a lift through the Mersey Tunnel and walked to New Brighton.
"There's work there," my mate said, and there is. It's a massive site run by Bower and Kirkland. It is a big Neptune Development and all the vans sub-contractors have Yorkshire, Manchester and York post codes and numbers.
All the sites in town are the same. Where are all the Liverpool firms working up there?
It's insanity! I want to work. I am a welder/pipe-fitter, 20 years of working with structural steel, pipe work, containers, stainless, alloy, mild steel, and am still looking for work.
I am prepared to wash dishes, clean toilets I told the woman in the job centre. I will do any job whatsoever.
It's all the fault of agencies. Nobody takes you on unless its through an agency. I even applied to collect glasses in a pub and I have not got any references. Oh my God, they want references for collecting empty beer glasses.
So who is making all the money? I will tell you who - prime-time Recruitment Agency, £7.50 an hour for Tig Aluminum Welding.
I was being paid £10.00 an hour for this top spec welding ten years ago, £8.00 an hour for MiG Welders working nights.
There is a good welding job going on OK wages at £12.50 an hour, that's more like it, but the reason it is £12.50 is because its only one day's work in Manchester. But there is an OK job in Liverpool paying £11 an hour welding skips.
I have had that many knock-backs since October. I am getting so fed up looking for work as a welder or on a building site.
I have visited shops, bars, hotels, night clubs, anywhere and everywhere I just keep getting the same old answers - sorry mate, we are not taking anybody on.
It's January and nobody has got any money, so I have even thought of being a comedian - I'd give anything a go.
I cannot afford to put an advertisement in the paper to advertise myself. Maybe I should wear a sandwich board to advertise myself - that might be a good idea.
So anyway I have joined Job Clubs, Progress 2 Work, Working Links, Way 2 Work and advertised in shop windows.
I am a newly qualified fitness instructor focus level 2 but can I get a job doing that? NO! I have been to every local gym, fitness club, sports centre and health spa, all to no avail.
I have got an N.V.Q. level 2 in numeracy and literature, an outwards bounds leader award, peer counsellings certificates, have done voluntary work with the homeless and recovering drug addicts and prostitutes.
Something has got to give soon. Surely change is in the air, and if I keep trying I will eventually find work.
Well how about this job I found today? Can I do it? Required a professor in nursing research £57.389-£93.172 (52 weeks a year).
What makes me laugh about that job is the information about working tax credits at the bottom of the advert - £1500.00 a week and top up with LJMU, egh!
I can do that, oh shit, there's that CS CS Card again. I have just passed the test and am waiting for the card.
What about this job? Glass Collecting Supervisor - that can't be right - £6.50-£7.50 a week? Painter? Yeah, I can do that? CS CS "GOLD CARD" and check on reliable references.
Ah, here's a good one. Interpreter for Albanian people - £12-£15 an hour, oh shit, I can't speak Albanian.
Cleaning, I can do that, but it's only £5.93 an hour, and only 12 hours a week.
URDU/PINJABI £12.15 an hour, that's ok if they speak English it's the same money.
Chair in Corporate Finance? Yeah I can do that. I have got a strong record of income generation but I got seven years for it?
A NACRO worker? Well I know I could do as good a job as my Nacro worker did. £8.57 an hour - I will go for that one.
Economics Accounting and Finance - no forget that one.
The Aintree race course are taking on staff for the Grand National event but it's only three days work.
Then there is a cleaning job but it's only ten hours work a week.
I have done all I can to find a job, had more knock backs than a glass in Yate's Wine Bar - no wonder people get fed up looking for work. I have applied for loads of jobs but heard nothing back - it's depressing.
"Sorry lad, nothing today."
"Sorry mate, we are just about surviving ourselves."
"Sorry lad, I've got welders sitting around doing nothing."
"Sorry mate, you need a CS CS Card to work on this site. Come back when you have one."
"Sorry mate, you are too old", replied the Princes Trust.
"Sorry mate, you are too young", when applying for a bus pass.
How do I prove I am looking for job, because they are stopping people's Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) if they don't think you are doing enough to find work.
I recently went back to Progress 2 Work - they are paying for my CS CS Card, and without this there's not a building site in the country you cannot get on. Health & safety gone mad or another government money making scheme?
I have been waiting for three long months for this card. I would be working by now if I had a spare £35 to pay for it myself, but when I got out of prison they gave me £48, (1 week JSA) and I have scraped by on this pittance ever since.
I look for work everyday. I have no agency working on my behalf. I was so desperate for money at Christmas I could not afford to buy presents for my kids or gran kids.
I phoned the Social Fund for a crisis loan. "Have you no members of your family you can borrow off?" they asked.
"If I did, do you think I would be asking you," I said.
"Don't you have any savings or property?, they added.
"Please give me some cash."
I had to lie and say it was for food, gas, electricity.
I asked for £60- £20 for each kid.
They eventually gave me £57.67 on Christmas Eve,so you can imagine I never got round to doing much shopping before Christmas Day.
I never had a Christmas lunch, eating instead cheese on toast, but I guess there's always someone worse off than yourself.
Comment left by dazza on 1st March, 2011 at 23:42
Comment left by rob saven on 3rd March, 2011 at 16:37
Comment left by Orgy on 16th October, 2011 at 9:52
Comment left by rob saven on 19th September, 2012 at 10:29
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