It’s been eight months since I spoke out against the disproportionate response and damage the government’s response to Covid has caused.
Eight months living on a quickly dwindling savings account I had spent a career diligently putting aside.
Eight months since I left a job I loved and a career that was just taking off.
Eight months of applying for positions commensurate with my skills and experience during the supposed job boom, yet still unemployed.
It is hard not have doubts that you have been blacklisted when you are successful in an interview process, get the job offer, then have that job offer pulled after HR sees your Discernable interview.
‘What would you do if you disagreed with something our company did?’ I was asked.
‘There were plenty of times I disagreed with Victoria Police and didn’t go public about it. I don’t think either of us has to worry about your organisation shooting rubber bullets at unarmed civilians; it’s a pretty unique situation.’
This is apparently the wrong answer…
Have I been blacklisted? Am I blacklisted for speaking out, or for supporting the Federal campaign of a current serving MP in David Limbrick? Is it both? Sure, whistle-blowing isn’t a protected attribute when looking for work (but I would have thought ethical and principled employees would be valued), however, political beliefs and activity are supposed to be.
I have had a lot of people tell me about minimum wage jobs that are available and that I should apply for them. Is it wrong to be completely insulted at the suggestion? I think it is. I think the career, skills, experience, and university education I have achieved should damn well count for something – and that I absolutely should not be detrimentally impacted by employers for my stance against the government, or my political persuasions. I don’t think it is too much to ask, after all, I am so much more than just those two things.
I don’t know what I expected when I spoke out. I didn’t have a plan B. Folly maybe, but my head was so clouded by the weight of what I was going to do, I wasn’t planning ahead, I just felt compelled to speak.
If I had truly considered the weight of my actions, if I had truly let myself feel the loss of my career and everything I had built and was building towards, I wouldn’t have gone through with it. Not considering the future in that way was a strategy to ensure I acted from a place of personal integrity, not fear.
I suppose I thought that if I do this, and people resonate with it, there will be companies, businesses, and people out there that will want someone like me to work for them. Are they out there?
I haven’t found them yet.
This article was first published here.
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