Pole Emploi

I will put my umbrella up for fear of advice falling too heavily.
As some of you know, my business has been damaged by the crisis. I contacted Pole Emploi, and they have been as helpful as ever. Not. I see another post mentions racism at PE, and Pole Emploi certainly seem obstructive.
Does anyone know if I can somehow get help from another Pole Emploi centre, not the nearest one? I can’t decipher the rules but they seem a bit rigid. I understand that it takes a medical certificate and a very long wait for access to the disability jobcentre, who are apparently better.
I see the doctor tomorrow, I probably will be advised against farm and gardening work for now. So what can I do? I can’t stand still for long, so shop or production line work might be difficult.
It has been nice to rest and get better, but I need to work.

Have you seen your assistante sociale? They may be able to offer some other solutions. You can usually contact them via your Mairie. Good luck.


Thanks. Good luck needed! The Marie have been contacted a number of times about the assistant sociale since March! and have still not made me an appointment. We certainly have an assistant sociale, they just haven’t arranged an appointment.
I don’t think she is any busier than any other social worker in France at this time, so I’m not sure what the problem is!

Have the Mairie given you the contact for Assistante Sociale… email/phone

If not, ask them for it… then you can make contact yourself.

No they haven’t, they have not been very helpful at all. I have just emailed them again now.

Try these links then…


Thanks. I have just managed to find a possible contact, and I will have a look at this.
Our Mairie drive us potty, they sure take their time when they actually do anything,

they are possibly, rather hectic at the moment. what with Covid and elections/new councillors there’s a lot going on…

and I’m not sure why you think Social Workers aren’t busy… :upside_down_face: :wink:


I don’t think they aren’t busy, I just didn’t think ours should be exceptionally busy and not able to help! Of course they are busy, there are many people in need, I am amazed at how some people survive, living in tin shacks and caravans and with so little. I feel guilty asking for help when I am baking and cooking with garden produce and fresh eggs!

Like many government posts jobs have been cut and retired people not replaced which means the workload is even higher. A close friend , an assistante sociale retired last year after serving part of the eastern Charente. More than half her time was spent trying to sort out problems with British families which eventually lead to her having a breakdown. She was lucky as her english was pretty good.
It’s easy to criticise , maybe try to put yourself in their shoes and understand the practicalities like job cuts etc

Three years ago OH retired from the pôle emploi after 30 odd years and watched as govt cutbacks affected her job. A son in law has been working at a local pôle emploi for a few years with the same problems and on a very low salary (just over the SMIC) so he finds it difficult to enthuse over his job. He and his collègues would find it ten times easier if the ´customers’ were more helpful and sometimes not abusive and threatening.

There are always at least two sides to every story.

Go to the Mairie for a quicker response, I doubt if many emails addressed to your local Mairie even get looked at, maybe they don’t have the time …


All helpful to know, Peter, thank you. I totally get the two sides of the story, I can see it.
I have hopefully, emailed the social assistant direct now, and I don’t intend to burden her for long, it’s just how things have turned out due to the circumstances. Some rely on their social assistant long term, but I just need a bit of a leg up out of this crash.

My friend in Charente reckoned that about 60% of her clients were British but she honestly never complained about that. To her every case was looked at in the same way. I always thought her dedication to the job was amazing !

I’ve heard how amazing they are, I know a woman with a disabled child who has relied on her social assistant for years as she doesn’t speak French and the social assistant speaks English.

Hard to advise without knowing more about your circumstances, but my first thought is to find a way you can still make use of your qualifications and experience.
There are plenty of people around with money and there are plenty of unemployed people around who can use a shovel, but there are not so many who can design a garden.
So could you just concentrate on design and get other people to do the work?
There are plenty of financially secure, retired people in France. Some just want to do gardening, but many just want a garden. Their interiors are perfect, but when it comes to the outside, they haven’t a clue.
The way the world of work seems to be moving is towards increasing unemployment and hundreds of applications for relatively unskilled work. But there will still be opportunities for people with something special to offer to people who can afford to buy the best.

It’s a good thought. Thanks. I looked into garden design in the past. I have a learning difficulty affecting numbers, measurements and straight lines, which makes the technical side of things more difficult. But, that said, I can certainly look at a garden and consider how it could be designed.
Something to think about. Problem is, I have not been able to replace my car due to the egg and chicken income situation. So, they may have to send me to a Usine for a while. 100,000 packs of watercress later, I may be able to kickstart a new business :grin:

Not a requirement for garden design, i would have thought! :laughing: :laughing: :laughing:
Hope you get that car soon.

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Thanks, well, it depends on how straight is straight, some things have to be straighter than others.

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Update on my career situation. The Doctor says that I shouldn’t return to any heavy work.
Damn. Maybe I can forget that he said that. I feel just fine.