Today’s random question: Are you stressed out right now? (If so, why? If not, why not?)
The short answer? Definitely! The why…well that’s a bit longer answer.
There are a TON of things I am stressed out about lately. Things that are “constants”, like money, bills, keeping a roof over our heads. Stuff like that. But today, specifically I am stressed about two BIG things. One, already done. I had an interview this morning at one of the local colleges. It’s not a big position, only being for 10 hours a week. However, it could become more and would at least be SOMETHING, getting my foot in the door.
The second BIG thing is my unemployment hearing tomorrow morning. Three words? Scared-to-death! But, no way around it. You see, the Oregon Employment Department has seen fit to tell me I can only look for jobs in the area they choose for me. Those areas being Hillsboro, Beaverton, Aloha, SW Portland West Hills. So, shame on me, bad bad bad, for looking for work in other areas of the country. In December 2009, my husband and I went to Florida. While there, I put in several job applications and dropped my resume here and there like it was a hot potato. We figured if I could get work there, we would definitely move there. We don’t care…we’ll move where the work is. Since we were also there on the day I usually log in and file my unemployment claim, I did so from the free hotel wifi.
And that’s where I went terribly wrong. Oregon tracks the IP addresses of where you log in from. So they saw I was in Florida. WHOA! WAY outside my “designated labor market”. So they assumed I was lying when I said I was looking for work, and was available for work for at least half the week. No matter that I told them, yes, I was in Florida, but I WAS looking for work. They didn’t listen. Instead they decided to slap me with a 5 week penalty, fine me to pay back 3 weeks of what they say were “fraudulent claims” and also slap on a huge fine on top of it all, like a cherry on a sundae. So, after fighting them for over a year now, I am FINALLY getting my hearing in from of the “non-partial – hired-by- the-State-of-Oregon” judge. *sigh* I am quite a bit nervous. My husband had to go through the same thing last month (yeah, he had to wait over a year too). Luckily, he was cleared of any wrong-doing (of course), so I am hoping to use his testimony and judgment decision in my trial. Crossing my fingers. At least it will finally be done and over. Doesn’t make me any less scared though. Wish me luck!! Going up against a state agency that refuses to believe you is never easy. They want to do everything they possibly can, including ignoring the facts and evidence, just to screw more people over. Guess they think us unemployed are just here, living it up, on the “huge” $200/week payment they dole out to us.