I began my career in optics in 1988. In 1989 came deregulation and not long afterwards the government withdrew free NHS testing. Every multiple panicked expecting a massive fall in sight test demand and I was mortified to witness many of my optom and DO friends being made redundant.
Some of them got jobs in other industries or undertook further education. Some started their own practice. One took his kids out of school, bought a boat, sailed round Europe for a year and had a ball.
Jump forward a year. The demand for sight tests didn’t fall, but dramatically INCREASED. The multiples who had sacked so many without a by or leave had to come crawling back and salaries / locum rates shot up. The moral of this story? Don’t give in and let them treat you like dirt. Hold your head high and demand a fair day rate and walk away if you don’t get it. It is not acceptable to treat us in this way and if we let this happen our profession will be devalued forever. Don’t forget; YOU have a GOC number and the business managers don’t. Never forget what you are and what you bring to the table.