Unemployed man told to buy £40 train ticket for job seeker's appointment (From Essex County Standard)
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Unemployed man told to buy £40 train ticket for job seeker's appointment
UNEMPLOYED Toby Whaymand, from Colchester, has waited three months for jobs advice – only to be told he needs to go to Harlow.
Mr Whaymand, 35, of Fingringhoe Road, has been trying to get an appointment with career advisors at Adult Community Learning in Barrack Street, Colchester.
The former IT technician was told the advisors were short staffed and was advised to make the 45-mile journey to Harlow.
Mr Whaymand is one of 3,299 jobseekers in the Colchester borough, latest figures reveal. He has been unemployed since he was made redundant in January.
Mr Whaymand said: “Every time I go to the careers advice service they’re really short staffed and busy. You can’t get an appointment.
“They just ask you if you can go to Harlow, but I’d have to pay £40 for the train.
“I’m unemployed on Jobseeker’s Allowance.”
Mr Whaymand has signed on at the Job Centre, but has not found work.
He wanted to get as much help as possible so contacted Adult Community Learning, run by Essex County Council .
According to its website, its specialist advisors can search for jobs, develop CVs, identify skill needs, career directions and training opportunities, and help with interview techniques. Mr Whaymand said: “I wanted to find out how to move forward following my redundancy.
“There aren’t any other jobs out there in what I was doing before.
“I know there are a lot of people who are not interested in getting work, but I want to work.
“The careers people are offering a service they can’t provide.
“I don’t think it’s just me, I can imagine there are others.
An Essex County Council spokesman said Mr Whaymand was booked in to see a Colchester advisor in September but did not attend. Mr Whaymand says he was not aware of an appointment.
The spokesman added: “We would welcome the opportunity to see him at a mutually agreeable time.”
He did not comment on staffing levels.