Helios had an Interview & the Prospective Employer Took the Piss!
When Homelessness is used to spin the proverbial windmill of legal obligations!
There’s been a new advert circulating the UK Radio waves.
I don’t know the exact script but it goes something like this:
No Home … No Address … No Address … No Bank Account
No Bank account … No Job … No Job … No Home
No Home … No Address
It emphasises the vicious bureaucratic circle of red tape that we face as homeless in the UK. The HSBC bank is trying to resolve the issue with their new account for the homeless,and although I fully appreciate their efforts, I’m afraid to say “it falls short of resolving many pitfalls of gaining employment under these circumstances”.
There are several other significant links in the chain that need to be taken into consideration to fully resolve the “No home … No job” crisis.
Distrust of charities, banking & officials
HSBCs new bank account for the homeless requires that you go through one of their partner “homeless charities” to gain an account.
Helios was homeless for a year before I met him. He had no permanent address but managed to retain employment & was saving for a narrow boat to call home. He had already had many interactions with homeless charities, banks and legal services during this time. They all made promises to help. But all turned out to be bad experiences.
When we met, we moved away from the area. Helios had enough saved for a small boat and I had just enough to start a small enterprise to keep us funded.
But the former banks and official services had not done the jobs they promised. Helios found all his savings had disappeared from his bank and his identity stolen.
We were now truly homeless.
And we found the same pattern of bad services repeating itself when we tried to avail ourselves of different services, with the hope of sorting the mess out.
Whilst we waited on them to provide the legal assistance, that again didn’t…