Skip to main content

Time's Up

After several months of waiting, today I’ve heard back from ATOS. I have a date for the WCA on the 4th of June. I filled my ESA50 back in January and it’s taken them 4 months to process it. I could try and change the appointment for an earlier time of the day as I’d much rather be the first appointment than be stuck in the waiting room surrounded by complete strangers and inevitably delayed. I have no doubt that the time I’ve been given (2:55 in the PM) will not be the time I’m seen.

Now begins two and a half weeks of stress and dread. I wish I didn’t feel that way, but then if that were the case I wouldn’t be in this situation of course. I have to travel to the appointment (I won’t tell them how) and sit in an environment I don’t feel safe in – despite the likelihood of the others present being even more dysfunctional. If these appointments could be carried out at, say, my local surgery, that would be much more amenable, but that’s part of the experience.

It is a sad and strange indictment of our world that I’m left dreading a service intended to be helpful. Even worse is the catch 22 that claimants are left with: if they turn up then it’s a sign they don’t need help, but if they fail to turn up, ostensibly because they can’t cope, it’s because they are lazy and don’t deserve help. It’s a horrible no win engineered by the government serviced for profit at our expense by ATOS.

But we all know the arguments. We all know ATOS and the WCA – and the government – stinks; just ask this guy. Now I have to decide what to do. The situation is even more complex: my sick note expires the following week and, until the decision following my test, is made I still need to supply notes. This means I have to persuade my GP to write another note, which I remain sceptical, or there is no point going through the test. If I were to eschew the test I’d have to claim JSA. To be honest I suspect that’s where I will end up; I don’t believe I stand a chance of passing this test at all given how the dying are being told to get a job! Oddly though, if I were to try and find or start a job right now and it didn’t work out I’d be worse off because I’d have to go back to the GP and somehow get a new note having just foregone my WCA for trying to do the right thing. This system means that you cannot do right for doing wrong.

So there you have it, I’ve got to queue up, hold my shit together, hope that the environment is safe and that the staff on hand aren’t a bunch of arseholes, hope that I am not kept waiting for hours on end – and hope I can get at least one more note pending an outcome that may take just as long to materialise (as this sentence) as this appointment.

And I’m one of the lucky ones in this awful disability lottery. 


  1. I wish you luck with your assessment.

    From what I've read - and I don't mean to worry or discourage you - much of the assessment is designed in such a way so as to find people "fit for work" by default. The ability to hear your name being called out by the person conducting the assessment, for example, or an ability to navigate your way around the waiting room to the assessment room, are taken as positive signs of work capability. The whole thing is a deliberate set up and takes absolutely no notice of people's very real but often "invisible" difficulties, and is in my mind utterly inhumane and shames what is supposedly a civilised country.

    So like I said I wish you all the best and I hope you get a good outcome from this.

    1. Don't worry I know what I'm in for - at this point who doesn't!

      I don't plan on telling them that i'm travelling by bus, but to be honest if they are going to start asking stupid questions to try and trick me out I've no patience for subterfuge. If honesty isn't enough then fuck them.

      I'm sure i'll be made to wait for ages in a busy waiting room. That's what worries me more to be honest. I have no uncertainty that i'll fail however. What happens afterward is really up to my GP and the DWP in how long it all takes.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

I Fucking Hate the Work Programme

That did not go well.
My legs were wobbly to begin with as I closed in on the church that passes for the office of the employment wing of the Salvation Army. My appointment was 3 to half past. I really did feel sick. Pretty early on, when he asked for the forms he gave me last time to fill in, I knew that what was arranged on the letter (a short interview with me bringing my CV and jobsearch) was actually going to be much longer. I also knew that, come half three when I had to leave to catch my bus back ten minutes later, I was going to have problems. 
Unfortunately, though more for me I fear, it never got that far; at 20 past he terminated the interview citing my apparent 'putting up barriers' as the reason not to continue. This was because I refused consent for him to keep my CV. I asked why he needed it and offered, three times, to show it to him (that's all), he said it was to apply for jobs on my behalf. The EEC's need this information.
What's an EEC? Employm…

U.N. and Them

What are my thoughts on this?

It's a humanitarian crisis. Is that a phrase we should only reserve for famines in Africa or force majeure? We seem to have a blind spot to these things when they are on our own doorstep - it couldn't happen here, could it?


Seven years of the most brutal selfish and greedy governance, not to mention the least competent, has brought us to the point where the United Nations are telling the Tories they are causing a 'human catastrophe' amongst the disabled and the sick. This is not the first time, and even that doesn't include their comments on the hated and spiteful (not to mention ineffectual) Bedroom Tax.

Do the Tories persist with these policies because they actually believe they are correct or even moral?

Or is it because they have no other way to appease the media attack dogs and/or the braying Shirefolk that delight in persecuting the poor as they do torturing foxes and badgers?

Is it both?

We have a government, in a first wor…

Into the Mirror

So tomorrow morning is my WCA. Needless to say I am not looking forward to it, and that would be an understatement. It's currently sitting in my mind, refusing to leave, cooking up a stultifying negativity. That's the thing with depression; it's a presence that, even if you manage to distract yourself for a time, it returns with hammer-like vengeance. That feeling alone is enough to make the problem of depression the horrible reality it is. Sucker punched by your own thoughts.

Logically - as if we live in a logical society - I should pass. My situation is unchanged from last year. However that is exactly why I won't pass. You might think it reasonable to simply report that fact, but the simplicity of doing so, the ease of process, is exactly why you can't. Instead I will be seen, likely by someone different, and asked the same questions; some of which will not be relevant but part of the deceptive nature of the process. For example, being asked 'how did you get…