They Should Be Fired

, , , , , | Working | June 11, 2019

(I am a tenancy support worker and one of the people I have been supporting, unfortunately, had a house fire a few days before this happened. They have had to move to a temporary flat with barely anything and cannot access their previous property until after the investigations are complete. Several days after the fire, I am with the tenant ringing various companies to change their address, cancel payments, and generally try to get things sorted. Near the top of our list is changing the address on the bank account.)

Me: *after going through security, etc.* “We just need to change the address on the account, as the previous address is unsafe to access.”

Bank: “Unfortunately, as telephone banking has not been set up, I am unable to do this for you over the phone. Their local branch can do this for you; just take two forms of ID and proof of your new address.”

Me: “They don’t have any ID; all they have is their bank card because there was a fire.”

Bank: “Alternatively, you could write to the head office with copies of your ID and change of address and they will process it within three weeks.”

Me: “I don’t think you’re quite understanding the situation. There was a fire. Everything was destroyed or is currently inaccessible and will be for several months. We need to change the address on the account as we cannot access any post that goes to the property.”

Bank: “And we will be happy to do that once they take ID into the local branch.”

Me: “What part of ‘there was a fire’ are you not understanding?”

(We went round in this circle several more times, including with the supervisor, getting nowhere. In the end, I hung up. We are going to go to the local branch with every piece of paperwork the tenant has left and hoping that someone there has enough common sense to understand why fire plus paperwork doesn’t have a good outcome!)

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