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A commonly expressed frustration was inflexibility of systems and their irrelevance for the recovery context. For some, risk-averse IT policies were adversely affecting their ability to do their job effectively and efficiently and adding frustration, for others slow reimbursements for mileage for client visits led to financial stress. For the vast majority frustrations related to red tape and the inflexibility of processes such as reporting or decision-making, which were not well suited to the recovery environment, and the inability to be responsive to changing client needs due to the time taken to navigate slow systems.

A major thing for us was the institutional obstacles. Nine months was spent negotiating on the contract back and forth. It was an incredible waste of time and energy. Dr Jack Saul - International Trauma Studies Program

There is the feeling that just because I am a good person and I say something it should be enough. But you have to work in this political environment where you need to find the language and work the systems to get things to happen. The red tape and the process you are confronted with becomes so difficult. For an application to the federal government for tax exempt status I compiled this huge thick package the size of a book and it took a tremendous amount of time. Huge effort. Peter Miller – World Trade Center Survivors Network

The government suggested plans and the local government could choose from the plans. If the real need was not included in the government plan then it couldn't occur. More flexibility is needed. Prof Yasuyuki Sawada - University of Tokyo

A real stressor is the rigidity of other systems. The effort it takes to get to know the systems and to be able to use them. Systems and models of service are rigid and office based. They are distant in bigger towns and not designed to be face to face in people's own homes. Things like funding, risk management... Helen Goodman - COGA, Kinglake

The New York City policy and procedure is applied to all other offices elsewhere too even if it doesn't make sense in our context. Anon – U.S.

There was a cultural mismatch between what was required by the donor in terms of reporting and what was feasible. Tohru Shirakawa – JVC