Picture: REUTERS
Picture: REUTERS

The Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) is barely operational without the influx of claims due to Covid-19. I was retrenched and submitted my claim for benefits via Ufiling on February 25. Nothing to do with Covid-19.

Move forward three weeks and my claim was rejected on March 20. No reason was given, but I received an SMS telling me to go to my local labour centre and submit an appeal. I have tried contacting both UIF Pretoria (call drops repeatedly before even ringing) and my local labour centre, which is Roodepoort (message saying mailbox is full). This is the state of affairs as we are confronted by Covid-19.

Furthermore, I had surgery for a broken right ankle and torn ligaments on March 12 and cannot walk for three weeks, so how do I go and stand in a queue at my local labour centre to contest a claim refusal that I am fully entitled to? How do the elderly and sick deal with this? Is queuing the social distancing they are trying to implement?

In my opinion, UIF is not fit for purpose.

Tersha Wilkinson
Via e-mail