The Dole, circa 1993

Because I’m currently being a starving artist, I’m considering going on the dole. I’ve heard that ever since Income Support Services and New Zealand Employment Service were combined into one and became WINZ, things have vastly improved.

I do hope so, especially after finding this unmailed letter in a box of my old stuff (the year is wrong – it should have been 1993, but you get the picture):


My rage related to the following incident. I’d received a letter saying that I had an appointment with one of the staff at ISS. I didn’t know what it was about, but I duly went in at the appointed time. I waited for about half an hour before the receptionist said that the person I had the appointment with wasn’t actually in that day. We rescheduled.

At the second appointment, I showed up and again he wasn’t there. I waited for almost an hour before he finally showed up. The reason for the meeting – I fit the criteria to do the Limited Service Volunteer training at the army camp near Ngaruawahia. I said I’d rather do something in Hamilton, so he sent me up to another office to check out training courses. I wasn’t eligible for any of them because I had not failed School Certificate.

Say what you like about WINZ, but at least this sort of infuriating, time-wasting nonsense doesn’t happen anymore.

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