Today I received a letter from CICA (The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority).
'I have now been advised by the Metropolitan Police that they have no record of your involvement in the July 07 terrorist attacks.
As is the case with all claimants who's involvement has not been recorded, The Metropolitan Police will be contacting you to take a statement, they will then confirm this in writing to us'
I guess I am not surprised, but I am upset, and angry. They have made me feel like a fraud. I am sure they have hundreds of false claims, but is this really necessary. The police will gain nothing relevant to their investigation by talking to me now. Surely it's a waste of valuable police time to send them round to talk to me just to prove I was there. We're probably only talking about 1,000 pounds worth of compensation here. Really, is it worth it?
I gave every contact detail I posses to an officer on the day, he wrote it all down in his bloody book. Where is that book? Why do I have to go through this again? At the time I was desperate to talk to someone, for someone to recognise that I was there, but I was surrounded by silence on that front.
I spoke to fellow passengers and heard that most had been contacted by the police to give statements. I felt rather left out, insignificant. Why had no-one come to talk to me? At the same time, I was told that these sessions were often hugely disturbing and lasted several hours, so maybe it was a blessing. Still, it was important for me for someone official to acknowledge that I was there. No-one ever did.
Now I've asked for money they're interested, they want to come and put me through reliving it all 7 months later. It has taken a compensation claim to make anyone interested in me. It stinks.
I had to go out there and find out what was going on, what support was on offer (not much). I emailed Ken, I went to my GP, (she offered me drugs), I called the 7/7 support centre hotline in the middle of one nightmare fuelled night. It was advertised on the internet as 24 hour, by the time I had called it, it no longer was. I finally went to see them, the woman I saw didn't know what to say, we sat in silence, finally she apologised and said it was her first day. I went to a Red Cross survivors meeting, it was on the 16th floor of a tower block. Someone actually walked all the way up as she was too scared to get in the lift. I was pretty petrified myself. The first thing we were told was 'If the fire alarm goes off it's real'....'Oh and there's a nice view of Kings Cross from here'. Jeepers, who are these people?
I am friends with the policemen who rescued us, the driver, and a hundred other fellow passengers. I have been seeing a psychiatrist for 4 months, I was off work for 2, I have PTSD, I was invited to the memorial service in St Pauls (after much perseverance). I am an active member of Kings Cross United, I have spoken to the press, I read out the names of the victims on our tube at our 6 month memorial service, but still I need to give a statement, prove I was there.
I just feel like packing the whole thing in. I don't want their blasted money, I don't want to go through it all again with the police, I am stamping my foot like a spoilt child, but I DON"T WANT TO DO IT!
I am off now to meet some of my fellow passengers and watch a play about that day. Maybe it'll help me with my statement, just in case I wasn't there.