Last year I got a surprising letter in the mail: I was coming up on the waiting list for Section 8! Section 8 is a housing program where the tenant pays up to 30% of their income in rent and the government pays the rest. This is huge!
Now, it’s not all great. Section 8 has strict rent limits that are very hard to meet. For example, in my town the rent would need to be no more than $1187 per month, including all utilities. I haven’t heard of a 1-bedroom apartment for so little in many years. Still, I figured it would be worth trying.
The waiting list for Section 8 can be 3-4 years. I’ve only been on the list for 2 years! Wow! So now it’s time to prepare, right? They need a lot of paperwork. Of course. I handed it all over.
Now, if you’ve ever applied for benefits in the U.S., you know how intrusive it can be. They want to know how much your income is. They want to know your spending on every little thing. They want your social security card, driver’s license, bank statements, copies of approval letters for all other benefits (because heaven forbid the agencies actually speak to each other!) and all sorts of other things. But I do it, because that’s how I’m sort of paying the bills right now.
I really hate handing over bank statements. There’s something about that which feels particularly intrusive and unnerving. But I did it. 12 months of bank statements. It took ages to print out all of the statements and white out the account numbers. Still, they showed which bank was mine, how much money I had, what I deposited, what I paid out, my name and address, etc.
And they lost them.
Yesterday I got a letter in the mail saying they needed my bank statements. I contacted the woman in charge of my case and she said she didn’t have them. I had her look again. She still didn’t have them.
What the fuck!?! They lost my bank statements for all of 2015!!
And now they want another copy. I know they want that copy before they’ll give me benefits, but is it worth it? Because honestly, I don’t know that it is. I’m not sure I’ll be able to use Section 8 anyway. And what if they lose them again? I was so unnerved that I didn’t even want to mail those statements, so I hand delivered them to the office. I really couldn’t have done more.
I’m not sure what I’ll do, but I know I’m pissed. And I’m going to let them know that. Because this is COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE!
If I were you, I’d be concerned about how the statements got lost and where they might be. I’d ask to talk to the supervisor of who you gave the paperwork to and make them try to find them.
In the meantime, I’d call my bank and tell them what is going on. They can watch for any unusual activity going on with your account just in case your personal info fell into dishonest hands. That probably isn’t anything to worry about, but I’d rather be safe than to be sorry on the off chance something did happen.
Good luck on getting this all worked out.
Thanks Shannon! Yes, I’ve contacted the banks and spoken to an agency that oversees this office and is escalating the matter. Still, it’s very disturbing and frustrating.
hi, I don’t know you…but I’m trying to connect with other spoonies on here. I understand the struggle with government stuff…how intrusive they are…how they basically keep you in poverty if you have a disability and struggle to work (or not)…all the way from Canada. I feel for you! 😦
Krysta, I’m sorry to hear you’re going through something similar. I hope you can make some great spoonie connections online. Blogging has been a great way for me to do that. You’ll notice some of the commenters are regulars – maybe you all can comment on each others’ comments and start a conversation that way!
❤ I hope so! 🙂