The BBC yesterday carried what seemed like a fairly routine piece about former Assembly Member, Helen Mary Jones and her quest to find a new job so as to put food on the table for her daughter and herself:
Ms Jones has had a testing few months too and followers of her Twitter feed will have read the latest developments in her job hunt over the summer.
The former Llanelli assembly member, who lost out to Labour in May’s election, is now among thousands facing a difficult job market.
She said she signed on for Jobseeker’s Allowance with a “heavy heart”, but was quickly brought down to earth when she saw others out of work in worse situations than hers.
Ms Jones, 51, said: “Anybody out of work is anxious and if you’re a single parent you’re more anxious.
“I went to sign on with a heavy heart, but it puts what happened to me into perspective.”
She added: “You just think, ‘Pull yourself together Jones’.”
She said she wanted to turn her back on politics in the days after the election result, but was persuaded to change her mind by friends, including Plaid AM Leanne Wood.
However, she is undecided about whether she will try to return as a front-line elected politician.
She said: “I honestly don’t know. People keep stopping me and saying you will be back. I think, ‘Will I?’.
“I’m currently looking for another job. I hope it’s a job where I can make a difference. Bottom line is it needs to be paying money to keep myself and my daughter.”
So far, so very uneventful. However, one person’s reaction to this narrative has turned this into a much more extraordinary story. Writing on her Facebook profile, Helen Mary Jones’ sister, Myfanwy Alexander was less than impressed:
She signs on despite having three houses, one of which was bought for her by the tax-payer, and a year of salary to tide her over. Sorry to have to say this about a member of my own family but this is a bloody disgrace. Live on the quarter million you alone inherited from dad before asking for hand-outs.
In comments on the post Ms. Alexander elaborates on her initial thoughts. She accuses the former Plaid Cymru AM for Llanelli of building up a property portfolio for her daughter and then adds:
she talks a very good talk. She is rich yet takes dole from minimum wage tax payers. And in terms of family solidarity, she was to one who put a price upon it and not at all in a caring, socialist way.
Not the best way for Ms Jones to start a campaign to become National Chair of Plaid Cymru.