ACC Shambles Ruining People’s Lives
ACC Shambles Ruining People’s Lives
Police are being congratulated by ACC support groups for promptly swinging into action on Monday night when a farewell message posted on an ACC support website prompted claimant concern about the safety of one of their own.
Maree Howard writes.
The Christchurch chairman of the Society for the Promotion of Accident Victims, Murray Jorgensen, is congratulating police for acting promptly after this message was posted on the ACCSupportNZ website just after 7 o'clock on Monday night;
" Today I've received my files from ACC. A 6 inch pile of sanitised paper which contains an incredible amount of duplication some times five or six times, mainly home help forms."
"There is a lot of stuff that I have originals of that are not there and the data is so jumbled as to make it near impossible to find any continuity as to date."
"I can't keep at them, I've had it, I'm not sleeping except in fits and starts, pain is being aggravated by stress and I'm off my tucker. Everything is just too much all I want to do is cry."
"I can't cope with this anymore, I can't remove the stress so I'm just going to let them do as they will, I've been royally done over by the system."
You can't beat it alone, get a fair deal from the system so all you can do is lie down and let them stuff you."
Been good knowing you all but I'm giving up."
The message prompted instance action from members of ACC support groups many of whom claim that ACC is deliberately engaging in persecution and cruel and unusual punishment.
A lawyer told Scoop that some claimant files he has seen looked like they have been dumped out of the window a two story building. A claimant told Scoop that it cost him $780 for his lawyer to put the file that he had received from ACC into chronological order. "It was an absolute dog's breakfast and it had to be deliberate," he said.
Mr Jorgensen said he is aware of dozens of claimants who are suffering under ACC's behaviour to the point that their homes are in jeopardy because they can't meet mortgage payments, some are maxing-out on their credit cards and their families suffer when they have been dumped from the scheme and are waiting for review or appeal hearings with sometimes no family income.
"ACC has no idea of the impact its decisions have on claimant's lives. It's almost torture and in a more enlightened country that's what it would be called," he said.
Scoop understands that claimant's who have no compensation income, and are waiting for a Court hearing date, still have to get a medical certificate of incapacity every 13 weeks. The claimants share of the appointment cost is $13 and must be paid to the doctor at the time of the consultation.
Prescription pain-killers which the doctor prescribes are sometimes unable to be afforded until the partner, who may only work part time, receives their weekly wage. Meanwhile, the claimant can go without the pain-killing drugs having exhausted the families savings months before.
When Scoop asked a claimant about going to a WINZ office for help there was a resounding "No, I've had an accident and ACC is responsible for me not the tax-payer. That would mean they would be paying twice so those dogs at ACC can invest more of our money to make themselves look good and get their bonuses."
Pride? Maybe! But thank God at least some people in this land of ours still have some principles and scruples even though they and their families are personally hurting. I don't think the politicians responsible can sleep as easily.
Another claimant has recently written to ACC CEO, Garry Wilson, complaining about the way his staff are abusing and ignoring the law. "You and your staff think you are above the laws of this country and use initimidation, bully tactics, threats and disentitlements. You say that you have not been made aware of complaints, well I am complaining, he wrote.
Fortunately, the website story did have a happy ending. By 10.30pm the following message was posted;
"OOPs, someone took my last message the wrong way and I had a visit from the police. Despite rumours to the contrary I am alive and well as I can be under the circumstances and I intend to stay that way."
"Whoever it was thank you for your concern."
"I only meant that I was staying away from the boards as I have had a gutsful of ACC and am unable to cope with things of that nature and feel that it would be best for my own wellbeing to keep away. Thank you whoever it was for your concern."
So, there are good people out there who are concerned about the wellbeing of their fellow human beings and this country is the better for it. That they have been put into that situation is the indictment - and that's the disgrace.
As for the NZ Police - they can take a bow and in today's world, I feel good about that.
By the way, according to the legislation, ACC is only allowed to invest our money if it is not immediately required for expenditure. Well, it seems to me that while claimants have a need for some of those investments because they are not receiving their proper rehabilitation, it must surely follow that ACC is breaking the law. Of course the investments are all subject to "Government Policy Direction" so is there one - if there is it's well hidden.
"Good afternoon ACC, I'm from the Audit Office and I'd like to see your investment and expenditure books."
And then, maybe a
few executive contracts might not be renewed.