Tuesday, December 25, 2007

And So This Is Christmas

Christmas Gifts, originally uploaded by ddbsweasel.

A Cranberry glass bell, three porcelain balls (I've been found out for exaggerating?) and the wooden horses, suitable for my fire horse star sign.
Today I celebrate the birthday of Christ. I am invited to a local church. Not having been to church on Christmas since before I was rejected by friends in the mid '90s, I feel reflective in mood.
The view from my unit is lovely. Creek on one side, park on another. It will be a shame to give it up. I have sufficient for January, but even if I find full time work, I may default on my home loan in February.
Last June, I was $10k in front and had sufficient, for the short term, to resign from work. I hadn't wanted to resign, but felt compelled to so as to protect my students from harassment that was directed at me.
Many years ago I appropriately reported a male teacher who had a habit of touching young girls inappropriately and invading their change rooms while they were changing clothes.
Although I had done nothing wrong with reporting the activity, the new Principal panicked and suffered a moral dilemma. In those days, the accusation of paedaphilia could have the accuser sued for more money than they would ever make. The accused had recently gone on what was thought to have been a sex tour to Thailand, and the Principal had joked about it among staff. The result was that the accused was promoted, placed in charge of a junior year where a class of girls had complained, and I was transferred from the school.
That should have been the end of the matter. The accused left teaching soon after. However, I was unaware of how the Principal had begun to bad mouth me to the department of education.
===Gifts 5
A school I was transferred to was located in the poorest part of Sydney, but was an excellent school, and I prospered there. I acquired a night job as a live in tutor at a prestigious boarding school. The boarding school wanted me to transfer to it, until a meeting occurred between the old school and the boarding school. Overnight, I was not wanted, and the boarding school tried to have me removed. Eventually, I was unfairly sacked, but unable to complain about the process due to a legal technicality. The Department of Education and the Government colluded to cover up the unfair dismissal as, the next year, a boy died from neglect I'd warned the boarding school about.
Then my day job became threatened. I was labeled as disabled for being fat. All my extracurricular programs were attacked until I gave them away. Student referrals were turned into complaints about my teaching. I accepted these forms of harassment, believing the chief harasser would soon retire.
Then my students were being attacked. A year 12 class had marks stripped from their HSC Trials for no other reason than they were in my class, and my harasser gloated over this in a message to the Principal. A year 7 girl with serious issues was pulled aside and verbally assaulted by my harasser, for the high crime of having been a child in need in my classroom. After many such incidents, I advised the Minister of Education that if the harassment did not stop I would resign. The Minister did nothing.
===Gifts 4
When I resigned, I had a plan. I would break my story to the media, and get a new job.
The media refused to report my story. It was too close to a federal election. Although I had done nothing wrong, some journalists felt that reporting it would expose them to defamation litigation. Other journalists claimed that the story was too old for them to worry about. Other journalists claimed that nothing significant had happened, and there was no one story to report.
I wasn't going to work for the same employer which harassed me, and I went to Centerlink to find a job. It was then I discovered I was not a citizen and I had not sufficient ID.

My ID should have been sufficient, I needed a birth certificate and I had one. It was supposed to be an official document issued by NYC, and it was. However, it was a photographic copy that NYC had made of the original because the original issued document had been burned in a house fire in ’72. I was told I would need a passport, birth certificate and proof of citizenship or residency.
Gifts 3
It took the better part of 5 months to get those documents, mainly because NYC had mailed my birth certificate to Canada. They had no problem billing my address, but they couldn’t send it to my billing address.
In the mean time, Immigration decided they had never heard of my parents, and they couldn’t find a ’95 declaration I’d made stating I was an Australian citizen. Old laws meant I could be an Australian if I could show who my parents were, however, without my parents, I needed my birth certificate.
While waiting for my birth certificate, legislation tightened and I needed a birth certificate to obtain citizenship by descent as well. And my parent’s birth certificates.
Eventually, I passed the immigration test with 20 out of 20, and was approved to become citizen, having paid the money, when it was discovered someone with my name was wanted by police in another state, where I had never been. The delay meant that although I had my passport, birth certificate and the times I had entered Australia as a permanent resident, Centerlink did not have sufficient paperwork to deal with me. So I got timed out again.
Meanwhile, the Minister decided to re examine my case when a local new service expressed an interest. Ten weeks later, the Minister resumed sitting on their hands. The result being the paper did not run my story, making it hard to find a job, and, I later discovered, I’d been timed out of an Industrial Relations court again.
Gifts 2Christmas eve, and I’m at Centerlink with my papers. I’m confidant of getting work in the new year, but uncertain if I can hold onto my unit. Merry Christmas.
a link to summation
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