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  1. Absolutely. What interested me is I said as well as Covid I am hard of hearing and rely quite heavily on lip reading, which is impossible with masks! He said they had screens up so masks weren't necessary which I found odd. When I do visit there I will still be wearing a mask.
  2. Just a quick message to say had my phone appt with my work coach today and they were absolutely brilliant. He apologised and explained the situation as as tomtom says it's purely down to the higher ups pushing the F2F appts. He said that he knows it's three weeks from vaccination that you are then as protected as you can be so he has booked me another phone appt in two weeks. He said don't be surprised if it changes to F2F but just to message him the day before and he will change it to a phone appt so no one has enough time to change his diary! Above and beyond, hats off to the man.
  3. Oh indeed I certainly don't blame them they have a tough job. That's why I asked him to have a word with the Team Leader. I suspect the Work Coaches could do their jobs as well from home as well. The Government doesn't help itself asking the public not to go mad and be sensible but they forget their own advice time and time again!
  4. Interesting. Must confess I wouldn't have known if it hadn't been a message from my work coach saying the decision to make them all FTF appointments were made last Friday after I messaged him about something else. I then saw lower down on my journal that my phone appt had been cancelled but had received no text notification. Then suddenly a message appeared saying I had a FTF appointment which had obviously been done in a hurry. If I hadn't signed in to complete another part of the journal and messaged my work coach I wouldn't have known. GP appointments are still by phone, Employment Agencies are still doing interviews via zoom, a lot of job interviews are still via zoom and yet JCP pulls everyone back in regardless of their situation?! Can you imagine F2F appointments in say Bolton where the Indian variant is, it would be deemed a health and safety issue anywhere else!
  5. Ah well seemed to have sorted it without using the complaint facility. I asked work coach if he could ask his Team Leader to apply a little common sense and said by the time the "next meeting" came around I would be fully vaccinated so why waste a year of me not going anywhere to possibly fall at the last hurdle. Asked if the Team Leader would take responsibility if I were to contract it and fall ill and ten minutes later they have changed it back again to a phone appointment and all future ones will be face to face which is fine, although I'll obviously be wearing a mask AND visor! Why don't these people have any common sense?! Change from phone, to FTF, back to phone, back to FTF then back to phone again. Totally unnecessary!
  6. I don't think so as I'm down in Sussex. Not having been indoors anywhere though for months bar my own home and with my second vaccine coming up this Friday it seems a ridiculous risk to take after staying safe for months just for the sake of three weeks from Friday for the vaccine to give as much protection as it can. I've just rang the UC Hotline to ask whose responsibility it is if I were to contract Covid and got seriously ill but they just said I had to speak to my work coach!
  7. Well they have changed it again! Apparently decision was made last Friday that all appointments are now face to face and if you don't attend it's a sanction. Ridiculous that they are asking anyone, let alone those vulnerable to this virus to attend face to face appointments before they have had both vaccinations.
  8. I have my second vaccine now scheduled for this Friday so within two or three weeks from the vaccine I should be fully covered, or as covered as you can be. Will ask the nurse if it's two or three weeks it takes to kick in as I can't find a definitive answer online. I have however now got another problem that I could do with advice for. I suffer with metatarsalgia which the consultant is now concerned has developed into morton's neuroma. It's pain at the ball of the foot which can progress to the toes and despite many an exercise and prescribed insoles it's not getting any better. It looks like my only option may be an operation and recovery is anything between six and eight weeks. Obviously it doesn't affect my ability to continue to look for work from home jobs, of which are unfortunately rare with my skill set, but it would mean anything to do with walking/driving will be out for a while. Wondering if it is worth discussing this with my work coach and whether a temporary move to ESA is a possibility if the worst happens? Thank you.
  9. The irony of that is that I personally did apply! Didn't even get through the online test. Wasn't nasty enough apparently!!
  10. Thank you all you have been very helpful. I've heard that is easier to sanction "customers" at F2F meetings although I should maybe put an "allegedly" in there. It is bizarre though. I was booked a phone meeting with the Careers Service re help with my CV a month ago. It didn't need much help but thought I better just go with the flow if they suggested something. Careers Service never called and despite a couple of journal messages from me pointing that out I never received any reply. Had two texts the day before, one from DWP and one from NCS "reminding" me but never got the call. I remember thinking that if it had been me not taking the call I would have probably got sanctioned. I've rebooked so will be interesting to see if they call this time!
  11. Thank you all. Remarkably have received a message this morning that says my work coach has changed it back to a phone appointment for me. Surprising but pleasing. Just very odd because they have been really good to be fair and allowed me to claim despite leaving my job voluntarily due to the covid risks. I worked in a small school where masks weren't mandatory for pupils.. I've only been claiming since December and we have been pretty much in lockdown for that time and I have had two very good previous coaches who were very understanding especially as I have a little bit of furlough coming through from a second job so not claiming the full amount, and that I couldn't apply for my usual jobs until vaccinations. My old school even wants me to apply again once things are safer. However my work coach changed yet again a few weeks ago and he seems to be a bit more "by the book" so to speak. I think he is fairly new to the job but he keeps asking for updates on my vaccine and pushing things where the others didn't. Has changed it anyway so that's a relief.
  12. Thank you for the reply. I think that the difficulty I may have is that the government had us diabetics down as clinically vulnerable and not clinically extremely vulnerable despite a high number of those who have died being diabetic. I'll see what the work coach says but it is just very frustrating considering I am just trying to old out for that second vaccine (which shouldn't be too far off) before I actually go anywhere. Especially with this Indian Variant by all accounts putting people who have had just one vaccination in hospital.
  13. First time here and would appreciate some advice. I'm a type 2 diabetic and therefore clinically vulnerable re covid. I have been on Universal Credit since my job became too much of a risk covid wise a few months ago. The DWP to be fair have been very supportive and recently have accepted that I apply for work from home jobs until I receive my second vaccination and all appointments have been by phone. However today I received a text saying next weeks appointment has been cancelled and been replaced by a face to face appointment at the job centre. I'm a bit baffled by this as I say above they have been pretty understanding re my circumstances until I get the second jab, which I am hoping for end of May, early June/just awaiting the text from my surgery. I have messaged my work coach to ask if they can continue with telephone appointments until I am fully vaccinated but as yet have not received a reply. Just wondering if I can do anything here or do I have to go in? Also if I were to contract covid and become seriously ill whose responsibility would that be in this situation? Thank you.
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