‘I’m totally fed up dealing with inefficient government agencies’

Nov 13, 2019
Dealing with government agencies can be a major source of frustration and anger. Source: Stock Photo/Getty Images

Right now I’m so p****d off it’s almost indescribable! It may seem like I’m venting, and I guess I am, but I know I’m not the only one to suffer the frustration and anger that one experiences at the hands of government agencies.

Let me tell you, I am so p****d off with dealing with government agencies I could punch a hole in the wall! It first started with Centrelink. About a month ago, I received communication advising me that my Rent Assistance would cease if I didn’t fill out the enclosed form and mail it back. As to ‘why’, I have no idea, but I duly did what was required and mailed it back to Centrelink as requested.

Following that, more recently, I received another letter saying that my Rent Assistance had ceased. I rang the number on the letter. I waited 45 minutes ‘on hold’ before I spoke to a ‘real person’ — Michael was his name. He sounded like a very nice man, based in Perth, who after a further 25 minutes got it all ‘sorted’ and advised that my fortnightly Disability Support Pension would not be affected. I checked my bank account and, nope, my pension had been reduced. I rang again, this time speaking to Charlie, in Melbourne, and after checking my bank account on November 1, it appeared all was good.

In October I rang Centacare to ask if I could get assistance with some home maintenance chores that were beyond my capabilities. They advised me I had to ring My Aged Care, a government organisation designed to help find government-funded services for such at-home help. I did and they advised they would send out an assessor to determine my needs. A delightful woman, Jemma, arrived. I answered all her questions, she filled in the forms, I signed them and was told I would hear from them soon.

Then Anglicare (a government-subsidised agency providing domestic services and home care) got involved. Because I’d just turned 65, regulations had changed and I would need a reference code from My Aged Care for the assistance they give me in order to continue. Back on the phone to My Aged Care I went and they informed me they’d have to contact the assessor.

Which brings me to the phone call from Anglicare to see if I had been given a reference code. I explained everything and what I’d been advised and said there was little else I could do. (I still have not received any home care or domestic assistance, by the way.) At this point, I haven’t just ‘jumped through all the appropriate hoops’, I’m wearing a bloody slinky!

What angers me more than anything is that whilst I’m fairly competent using a computer and not backward in coming forward, there are others far more senior than me, who would be at a total loss attempting to navigate the complexities of the ‘system’.

I rarely discuss politics or religion but on this occasion, I’m sorry ‘ScoMo’ but your government (and it’s hangers on) is pissing me off no end! None of our politicians or those working in government departments will suffer the indignity of scratching out an existence on a meager pension. None of them! Politicians leave parliament on very comfortable $200,000-plus pensions, having been paid a very handsome salary plus all the ‘extras’, for your service to the Australian public.

Well you can shove it up your fundamental orifice!

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