Diary entries cover a variety of topics, some of which you may find triggering. These topics include self-harm, suicide and domestic violence.
16 Apr 2023
Q&A

Bessie J

What is your experience of speaking to the DWP?

I had a job, but had to move away from my home town with my daughter due to domestic violence.

After 6 weeks the wages dried up and I was forced to claim benefits.

I had no idea where the job centre was based in an area I knew nothing about. The village was rural and the council office only opened part time. I had no house phone and no credit on my mobile.

I was told by a benefit advisor to walk 6 miles to the nearest town to the job centre, I didn't know which direction.

I went home and sobbed out of despair. I left a violent situation and nobody cared if we went hungry.

Word must have got out as 3 ladies from Gingerbread appeared at our door the next morning offering a food parcel and support with benefit claiming. They took me through application forms step by step. It took 12 weeks to sort out all benefit entitlement. I am grateful for this charity.

Cite this entry

Use Bessie J's words in your own research or editorial
Changing Realities (2023), Bessie J. https://changingrealities.org/e/v1BqT (16 Apr 2023)
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