PiU (samedi) wrote,
PiU
samedi

Detention! Or: my latest visit to immigration

My work visa expired last week, though with all the things our academy director is dealing with at the moment it wasn't until today that he realized that we needed to visit immigration to take care of it.

I'd been to the Uijeongbu Immigration Office several times without any problems - usually getting everything done within 15 minutes, and never waiting more than 25 - but with the office moving to a purpose-built site in Yangju in November we were hoping that things would go even more smoothly this time around. On the way there our director complained about how the building was only identified in Korean despite the fact that many (most?) of its patrons are non-Koreans.

We arrived at 11:50 and took a number for Visa & Resident Services. There were 42 people ahead of us in line and two employees working at the counter. After 30 minutes one of those employees left on a lunch break. During this time there was a man sitting at the Naturalization desk with nothing to do and two more employees at the Invitations counter who were chatting between themselves. By 12:50 our director was getting fed up with waiting and went up to the oldest-looking employee to complain. The man was a low-level supervisor who claimed that he had asked the woman at the Invitation counter to help with the workload but she had refused, claiming that she had some data entry that needed to be done first.

I was somewhat worried when our director went up to the supervisor, since 'trouble makers' can be flagged as such in the Korea Immigration Services network. Fortunately we were treated quite nicely when it was finally our turn.* Granted, it took three hours of waiting, but the woman working at the (Outgoing) Immigration desk began to help whenever she could.

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Tags: identity politics / migration, uijeongbu (의정부)
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