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'Please, for god's sake give me a job': An old man's plea

JAMES Lindley used to live an active life.

His modest Berserker home is full of mementos of his past adventures - fishing rods, sporting medals, speedway jackets, travel photos.

But now at the age of 77, James can't find a job to give him purpose, despite having six university degrees.

A panel beater by trade, an injury took James away from a life of working with his hands; so he turned to academia at the age of 60 in a bid to return to the workforce

"After I got hurt and couldn't work any more and put on a pension, I felt I was too young to just stop so I went to university and the got various degrees, but they don't help me," James said.

James Lindley has finished his 6th university degree and is now looking for a new project to keep him occupied.
James Lindley has finished his 6th university degree and is now looking for a new project to keep him occupied. Chris Ison ROK090217cage1

"When you're 77-years-old people aren't very interested in giving you a job in business and most of my degrees are in business, management and administration.

"I started study at CQ uni at the end of 1999, did the steps course out there and then went into university in the year 2000, so I've been studying since then."

 

James Lindley with a photo of himself during his speedway riding days.
James Lindley with a photo of himself during his speedway riding days. Chris Ison ROK090217cage2

James' mind has far from dimmed in his old age as he still gets "credits and distinctions" in his university courses, but the belief a degree would help him get a job has turned into nothing but false hope.

Even with his wealth of knowledge he has been left feeling "despondent" and yearns to contribute to society - no matter how small.

"I know so much with my degrees and I'd love to be able to help someone rather (than letting my knowledge) die with me," James said.

"I expected to get a job - my first degree was a bachelor of business.

"I continued on getting degrees because I hoped the better I got the more somebody would want me.

"It just doesn't work that way - they don't want you.

"There's probably a lot of people like myself who want a job and we're just waiting to die."

While his life was once filled with speedway and travel in his heyday, James' days are now spent whiling away the hours in his home.

"I've got nothing to do now, all day long I do nothing except gaze into space or read a book," he said.

"I put resumes in, but I don't even get an answer.

"That's all I've got to do and I want to do something.

"I want to feel useful somewhere.

"There must be so many people like me who get to this age and nobody wants them, it's a terrible thing."

Topics:  elderly employment jobs retired


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