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Bloody telesales and the elderly!

(21 Posts)
Sunny67 Fri 19-Jun-15 17:47:17

My dad and dsm both have Alzheimer's and they get loads of calls from companies trying to sell them services. They are already sighed up to TPS are ex-directory but this seems to make no difference. Dsm has had four calls today which she thinks was the same man but couldn't be sure. It's only two weeks since we had to cancel satalite TV cover because they already have it. Thankfully it was within the cooling off period. I've answered the phone to people when I've been at the house and I've told them to remove the number from the system and that I'll report the company If they call again but it's like peeing in the wind. Why can't they leave vulnerable folk alone?

hiddenhome Fri 19-Jun-15 17:50:16

People with dementia are useful cash cows for these companies.

You can buy phones which screen calls for you and only put recognised numbers through. You need to look into this.

Gileswithachainsaw Fri 19-Jun-15 17:52:10

Yanbu. It's getting harder and harder to get rid of these people who call up. not just elderly people but vulnerable people in general or those who have English as an additional language and aren't fully aware of what's being said.

It's fraud/theft or some other offence surely? its no different to robbing them.on the street really

treaclesoda Fri 19-Jun-15 17:56:55

I agree, it's despicable.

I've had my arse handed to me on a plate on mumsnet in the past for saying so though. Apparently I should respect the fact that these are just people trying to earn an honest living. But it's not an honest living is it? It's trying to talk vulnerable people into buying something they don't need in order to hit your own sales target. It might be legal, and a legitimate sales technique but it's sure as hell not honest.

PHANTOMnamechanger Fri 19-Jun-15 18:01:07

I was looking at a very useful citizens advice page on nuisance calls the other day, there are many more ways (other than TPS) of blocking calls where the number is from india or the caller withholds their number etc.

I am at my wits end with 4 or 5 calls a day either PPI, accident injury, microsoft calling about my computer hmm and loads of other crap.

I am always POLITE and say no thank you. THEY on the other hand have started getting ruder and ruder. Asking why, whats wrong with you, madam let me talk to you, and actually yelling NO! and hanging up when I ask for my number to be removed from their list!!

I need to get caller display and only answer the phone to numbers i know. Grrr!

MIL got herself in a right sate last summer over agreeing for some salesperson to come see her (windows - we are in your area, we have a great offer on for a limited number of customers, dont miss out etc etc) BIL and DH both complained to the firm and cancelled, she was still worried about them possibly turning up at her door and conning her into something she did not want.

Sunny67 Fri 19-Jun-15 18:37:27

ThNks Phantom I'll have a look what's available

Yarp Fri 19-Jun-15 18:39:23

I have BT 4500 with large buttons. You can block numbers on it

Yarp Fri 19-Jun-15 18:41:11


I can't imagine most people said that, though, did they?

Most of us find it irritating ourselves, and targeting vulnerable elderly people is despicable elderly

Yarp Fri 19-Jun-15 18:41:34 too many elderlys there!

Sunny67 Fri 19-Jun-15 19:41:30

Completely agree Treacle. My dsm was in tears when we were cancelling the satalite cover. She kept saying how stupid she was that she couldn't remember they were already covered. She had only been diagnosed with Alzheimer's a few weeks earlier and she is caring for my dad who also has it. So she has enough on her plate without having to fend off this type of thing. Seems to be blaming the vunerable for saying yes and excusing these companies because they are only doing an honest day's work.

Sunny67 Fri 19-Jun-15 19:44:42

Thanks Hidden too. I'll have to have a look at these phones you mentioned. They have a carephone service but these type of calls are no number id, just like their doctors so I don't know how they go on, need to do some research

feebeecat Fri 19-Jun-15 19:56:35

YANBU they are a complete pain in the arse. And I don't much care about upsetting people anymore, some of them are just downright rude now.
My elderly mother gets loads of these, mostly asking to speak to my dad - who died five years ago. At first we used to explain & ask for the number to be removed, but it quickly became obvious that they just don't listen. One specific company just kept on ringing & asking for him - this isn't even a particularly large company, they just kept at it despite verbal & written requests stating the upset they were causing.
TPS, ex-directory, none of them work. I got her a new phone with an answering machine that she can just leave on & screen calls. We have a 'secret' ring so she knows it's us & if I can get the numbers I just block them.
Mum is 86 now & although still thoroughly fed up of them, she is 'toughening up' a bit more - she's now brave enough, instead of listening to the spiel if they do get through, to just say 'no thank you' and hang up. She thinks she's being a real rebel.

Sallyingforth Fri 19-Jun-15 20:22:30

This device was designed specially for your case OP.

It will screen and filter all the calls. If you want, you can set it so that only you and any other known callers can get through.

Sunny67 Sat 20-Jun-15 08:56:10

Thanks Sally, I've just had a look on the link and it seems perfect. Just need to make sure dad doesn't unplug it but that's a different story smile

Sallyingforth Sat 20-Jun-15 10:00:00

You can access it remotely and check that it's still working. Good luck!

SaucyJack Sat 20-Jun-15 10:03:19

YANBU. This was one of the main factors in why my granddad moved to sheltered housing, as between his hearing loss and his dementia he was a sitting target for unscrupulous door-to-door salesarseholes.

BackforGood Sat 20-Jun-15 10:16:38

IMO, it's not just elderly folk though.
Why should we all be having to take steps to prevent these calls? confused
I think there should be much tighter regulation / punishments for firms doing this - and some kind of protection for all of us to prevent our names and contact details being sold on.

treaclesoda Sat 20-Jun-15 10:36:10

Yarp tbh I was really surprised by how many people were on the side of the telesales people. I've been on quite a few discussion threads about them over the years that I've been on mumsnet and have been told loads of times that I'm being very unfair by demonising people who are earning an honest living. And some of the suggestions made have been very unhelpful too. I should just tell my elderly parents to hang up. Well, I do tell them to hang up, but I can't actually make them (when I'm not there) and my mum in particular is terribly polite and just doesn't seem to be able to hang up on someone who is trying to talk to her. Or they should have caller ID. Well, they do, but by the time they struggle to their feet and find the phone handset (they are forgetful and don't always remember to keep it within arms reach) part of the damage is done; I am just as afraid of one of them falling and breaking a leg whilst rushing to get to the phone as I am of them being tricked into parting with money.

And I agree that it's not just elderly people either. I don't see why any of us should have to put up with it. Unsolicited sales/'research' calls should be illegal as far as I'm concerned.

HelenF350 Sat 20-Jun-15 10:40:59

I did telesales when I was 19 for a couple of years and always said goodbye and hung up if I got old people who sounded vulnerable or gave them a clear non scripted explanation of whatever we were selling. I still had one of the highest rate of sales on the office and a clear conscience. To be honest our supervisors would get annoyed if we handed over 'dodgy' leads but a lot of people used to just to try and get their commission up.

Haricot Sat 20-Jun-15 11:20:55

I cannot recommend true call highly enough. My elderly father (currently in the process of being diagnosed with dementia) became very vulnerable to cold callers. He ended up spending tens of thousands of pounds on things he didn't need (solar panels, air conditioning, new boiler etc). Since fitting true call I have total and complete piece of mind (sorry to sound like an advert). You subscribe to the web app and can control who can get through to them (friends and family go on a list of approved callers) and everyone else gets a message saying that my father is only taking calls from friends and family and if they need to speak to him they should call his daughter on .......
I can also see who has called him and who he has called.
Please consider getting one fitted - it's really easy to set up.

BackforGood Sat 20-Jun-15 12:11:41

That sounds excellent Haricot smile

Although, I still think it shouldn't have to be for people to have to take measures like this - the companies shouldn't be allowed to buy your numbers, or make randomly generated calls in the first place.

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