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  • FIRST POST
    • Former MSE Wendy
    • By Former MSE Wendy 31st May 12, 12:05 PM
    • 868Posts
    • 1,782Thanks
    Former MSE Wendy
    PLEASE READ BEFORE POSTING: Money Saving Expert / CAB pilot service
    • #1
    • 31st May 12, 12:05 PM
    PLEASE READ BEFORE POSTING: Money Saving Expert / CAB pilot service 31st May 12 at 12:05 PM
    Welcome to the Citizens Advice Bureau discussion board which aims to help people get started on selected topics.

    Post your queries in the relevant board below and a Citizens Advice representative will aim to answer your question within 2 working days.

    If you’re already receiving support and advice from your local CAB, then please continue your discussion with them rather than post on this board.

    Please be aware, this type of forum collaboration is new for MSE so it’s currently a trial. We hope it is well used, but as we’ll all be finding our feet, please be patient as it grows.

    Citzens Advice has several bureau advisers on this board, based around England & Wales, initially answering questions on four different topics:

    · dealing with debts and debt disputes – see board
    · housing benefit – see board
    · tax credits & benefits for people in work or looking for work – see board
    · your basic rights at work and redundancy problems – see board

    You’ll recognise a CAB adviser as their username will be displayed in bold purple, eg CAB Malvern Hills representative, and have a special representative signature.

    If you have a question about other topics or issues, please see if the Citizens Advice self-help website has the information you need Adviceguide. If you need more help, please contact your local bureau. You can get their details from the CAB directory. Comments on CAB services are always welcome, so please let it know what you think using its Feedback form.

    As usual, please report any inappropriate/illegal posts by clicking the Report button in the bottom right corner and don’t reply. The CAB advisers aren’t part of the MSE Forum Team and aren’t there to deal with this so please don’t contact them. This is for their sanity as much as ours!

    This board’s for help, not judgement so it’s not the place for discussion about benefits political policy.
    Last edited by Former MSE Wendy; 28-11-2012 at 4:37 PM.
Page 2
  • ani 26
    There are too many random threads on here, where queries are not replied to by the cab advisors. Surely this defeats the object?


    Maybe it needs to be minimized somehow, rather like the " ask the cccs counsellor a question " section?


    Just looking at it again, maybe a more extensive range of topics covered / listed by the cab advisors, and non of these random question threads?


    Take the PC World and Blackberry thread for instance, ( selected at random.)


    There is already a section on the main board? and who knows the definitive answer to this question? It's not working.


    Consumer query type thread specifically for cab advisor to answer, in this instance?


    How much do you pay for services rendered?
    Last edited by ani 26; 11-06-2012 at 5:42 PM.
    Debt free - Is it a state of mind? a state of the Universe? or a state of the bank account?
    free from life wannabe


    Official Petrol Dieter
    • WeegieWumman
    • By WeegieWumman 11th Jun 12, 8:05 PM
    • 225 Posts
    • 1,239 Thanks
    WeegieWumman
    I welcome this CAB pilot service. Like anything new, it will have teething problems. There's no reason why it shouldn't have the capacity to evolve into a really useful forum. Good luck with it.
  • mel12
    Just a suggestion, but have CAB thought of taking on and training volunteers to do online-only advice. I had a look into volunteering for my local one but its daytime only hours that are difficult to fit around working. I, and perhaps other people might be interested in doing some evening or weekend volunteer work, which would also help CAB give more regular replies to the questions here.
    Only after the last tree has been cut down,
    Only after the last river has been poisoned,
    Only after the last fish has been caught,
    Only then will you find that money cannot be eaten
    • Lady_K
    • By Lady_K 12th Jun 12, 12:43 AM
    • 4,405 Posts
    • 855 Thanks
    Lady_K
    Why is this thread bright yellow and bright blue rather than the usual green and light aqua? Are all of the threads going to be changed to this colour?
    Last edited by Lady_K; 12-06-2012 at 12:45 AM.
    Thanx

    Lady_K
    • wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver
    • By wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver 12th Jun 12, 5:24 AM
    • 5,607 Posts
    • 10,481 Thanks
    wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver
    I think the CAB Branding is KEY to how people behave on the Board.
    I for one have had it up to here with Benefits Bashers who interfere with other peoples Claim Threads and stand in judgement over things that are private, but shared in trust with people hoping to get help.
    Because of the above I have not felt able to open up and be myself in true MSE fashion. (ATOS and Corporate Representation/Lobbying/Nagging doesn't help).
    My hope is that the CAB labelled Boards will induce a new form of behaviour on MSE that of Amateur Welfare Rights Advisors, just as one would advise on Love Life-Agony Aunts, Chefs-Cooking, those who live life to share the benefits of making it work in some areas of their lives.
    These branded Boards with new behaviours, slower behaviours to exert a positive life giving influence on the Boards that does not in anyway condone Benefits Fraud.
    #TY[/B] Would be Qaulity MSE Challenge Queen.
    [B]Reading whatever books I want to the rescue!:beer[/B
    WannabeBarrister, WannabeWife, Wannabe Campaign Girl Wannabe MSE Girl #wannnabeALLmyFamilygirl
    #notbackyetIamfightingfortherighttobeMSEandFREE
    • jackyann
    • By jackyann 14th Jun 12, 6:32 PM
    • 2,998 Posts
    • 5,589 Thanks
    jackyann
    I too have felt uncomfortable about some unhelpful (but not bad enough to report) comments.
    I sort of presumed that in this section, we could pitch in as usual, but there would ALSO be an "official" CAB reply - which might take into account some of the issues raised by the "amateur" replies.
    As it's piloting, if it gets too unwieldy, then I suppose we may have a section in which only the CABs can reply.
    • kpwll
    • By kpwll 14th Jun 12, 8:37 PM
    • 1,407 Posts
    • 2,633 Thanks
    kpwll
    I'd just like to add my good wishes and thanks to the CAB advisors. It is common knowledge that appointments are hard to come by (that is not a criticism) and a shortish wait for advice and/or help, without having to go out of your own home (in most cases) should be welcomed.
    • RuthnJasper
    • By RuthnJasper 14th Jun 12, 10:02 PM
    • 3,589 Posts
    • 8,606 Thanks
    RuthnJasper
    I think that this thread is an absolutely fantastic idea - extremely helpful; though I can see why it could easily be open to abuse/inadvertent misinformation.

    Would it be feasible to set up something whereby the OP alone starts (and can go on to post further in) their own thread and then only official CAB representatives or MSE employees can post responses - perhaps logging in with a password to do so? It might be a bit over-complicated, but at least it would stop Trolls, Flamers or those who offer advice with the best intentions that is unfortunately inaccurate...

    I still think that it is a worthy idea and one that deserves nurturing.

    Best wishes. xx
    • RuthnJasper
    • By RuthnJasper 14th Jun 12, 10:05 PM
    • 3,589 Posts
    • 8,606 Thanks
    RuthnJasper
    Why is this thread bright yellow and bright blue rather than the usual green and light aqua? Are all of the threads going to be changed to this colour?
    Originally posted by Lady_K
    I might be wrong (!) but I think the yellow background with blue writing is official CAB livery and denotes that the CAB is participating in this thread. It also sets it apart nicely from the usual threads.

    • John_Pierpoint
    • By John_Pierpoint 15th Jun 12, 3:13 AM
    • 8,231 Posts
    • 7,383 Thanks
    John_Pierpoint
    I think the first answer should be provided by the CAB but after that other opinions should be allowed.

    As the saying goes "If you want to learn something teach it". This interchange could be a training experience for CAB volunteers too.

    Even CAB replies can be guilty of "assumption makes an a s s out of you and me".
  • CAB National Representative
    Thanks to everyone for their ideas and feedback on our CAB board - which we welcome and appreciate. We will be regularly reviewing how we've set up the board and may change things in the future, in liaison with the MSE team.
    Official CAB Representative
    I am an official representative of CAB. MSE has given permission for me to post in response to questions on the CAB Board. You can see my name on the companies with permission to post list. If you believe I’ve broken any rules please report my post to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com as usual"
    • BobQ
    • By BobQ 16th Jun 12, 12:24 AM
    • 9,459 Posts
    • 12,237 Thanks
    BobQ
    Seems a good idea but I think you are causing unnecessary confusion in not making it clear whether non-CAB advisors can and should respond.

    This question has been asked several times above and I cannot see a clear answer.

    With respect its not a good way to communicate your intentions.
    Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are incapable of forming such opinions.
  • ani 26
    Seems a good idea but I think you are causing unnecessary confusion in not making it clear whether non-CAB advisors can and should respond.

    This question has been asked several times above and I cannot see a clear answer.

    With respect its not a good way to communicate your intentions.
    Originally posted by BobQ

    Exactly. Isn't this the forum for the definitive CAB response? It doesn't appear to me as if queries are responded to, by the CAB representatives.


    Please don't say they are busy, because we all know how busy they are. Hasn't the big cheese donated 1 million to the cab? Perhaps a tad more dedication to this forum?

    It just seems to be a token addition, right now.


    Off soapbox.
    Debt free - Is it a state of mind? a state of the Universe? or a state of the bank account?
    free from life wannabe


    Official Petrol Dieter
    • wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver
    • By wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver 16th Jun 12, 7:31 PM
    • 5,607 Posts
    • 10,481 Thanks
    wouldbeqaulitymoneysaver
    use it as a form of training of would be Welfare Rights* and Consumer Rights Advisors? first port of call but label Posters as 'Trainee CAB Advisors'.
    Multi-Agency Training ie Rightsnet Benefits and Work which I know provides Professional Training for Welfare rights Advisors... Just a thought..
    #TY[/B] Would be Qaulity MSE Challenge Queen.
    [B]Reading whatever books I want to the rescue!:beer[/B
    WannabeBarrister, WannabeWife, Wannabe Campaign Girl Wannabe MSE Girl #wannnabeALLmyFamilygirl
    #notbackyetIamfightingfortherighttobeMSEandFREE
    • molerat
    • By molerat 17th Jun 12, 9:27 AM
    • 16,464 Posts
    • 10,638 Thanks
    molerat
    My 2p.
    I am afraid this board just seems to be a mish-mash of random posts that really belong elsewhere with the majority of responses coming from regular members. Although a good idea I honestly cannot see the point of it in its present form.
    www.helpforheroes.org.uk/donations.html
  • cit_k
    Any reason why your specifically excluding what must be a rather common query area - that of benefits for those not seeking work? (i.e why exclude the sick and disabled completely?)
    • molerat
    • By molerat 18th Jun 12, 12:53 PM
    • 16,464 Posts
    • 10,638 Thanks
    molerat
    The horrid squashed layout and font colours don't work. Really unpleasant feeling when reading for some reason.
    www.helpforheroes.org.uk/donations.html
    • dunstonh
    • By dunstonh 18th Jun 12, 2:54 PM
    • 88,112 Posts
    • 53,344 Thanks
    dunstonh
    I have to agree with earlier posts that say this section is a random selection of posts that are often not really applicable to the CAB and are easily answered by normal members. Many of the experienced contributors with the knowledge required wont see the posts in here and you could find threads being neglected because they are not getting answered by CAB and not getting answered by regular contributors.

    Maybe there should be an option on the board for posts to be "reported" for transfer to the CAB section if its felt the issue is more within the CAB remit and better suited there. You would reduce the threads significantly and remove the unnecessary and leave those needing help to be properly resourced. The CAB does not need to get involved in things like "how should i invest the money" etc.

    In theory, half the posts on this site could end up in the CAB section unless some sort of posting guidelines are introduced.

    FYI, I hate the squashed look. Like many people, I have a widescreen monitor and how more wasted space on screen than utilised in this section.
    I am an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). Comments are for discussion purposes only. They are not financial advice. Different people have different needs and what is right for one person may not be for another. If you feel an area discussed may be relevant to you, then please seek advice from a Financial Adviser local to you.
    • Lady_K
    • By Lady_K 18th Jun 12, 3:35 PM
    • 4,405 Posts
    • 855 Thanks
    Lady_K
    I don't like the squashed look and feel or the colour scheme either which is why I asked earlier in the thread if it was going to extend to other parts of the website. It does not feel easy on the eyes, especially the bits of bright yellow. The font feels a little faded and tiring to read too, even the blue bits feel a bit washed out. I didnt mention it earlier as I have an eye condiion but if other people are feeling it too it can't be good
    Thanx

    Lady_K
    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 18th Jun 12, 7:49 PM
    • 10,447 Posts
    • 12,365 Thanks
    pmlindyloo
    I think the main problem is that people are not reading the ''Please Read Before Posting thread 1.
    The CAB reps are only answering questions on selected topics.

    Perhaps the other threads could be moved to the appropriate forums.
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