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Labour and Alliance fail students

Labour and Alliance fail students

Press release For immediate release 16 August 2000

Labour and Alliance fail students

The decision by Labour and Alliance to vote down a Green Party private members bill to restore the Emergency Unemployment Benefit for students is being described as a breach in the relationship between students and the Government.

Tonight in Parliament all parties, except the Greens and NZ First, voted against the Social Security (Work Testing and Community Wage) Amendment Bill that, among other things, restored universal access to the Emergency Unemployment Benefit (EUB) for students over summer.

“It is disappointing that the Government has silenced the stories of the thousands of students that are denied access to any income support over summer by refusing to let the Bill go to Select Committee,” said David Penney, Aotearoa Tertiary Students Association (ATSA) National President.

“In Opposition the Alliance and Labour were prepared to milk this issue to gain the support of students. The Alliance even ran a postcard campaign about the issues on campuses directed at Jenny Shipley,” said Sam Huggard, Co President of the New Zealand University Students Association (NZUSA)

“We are dismayed that now in Government those promises have been forgotten,” said Sam Huggard.

“We commend both the Greens and NZ First for recognising the discriminatory nature of the current policy and not hiding behind meek excuses that the return of the EUB is unaffordable” said David Penney.

In 1998 Steve Maharey (Minister of Social Services and Employment) described the National Party move to restrict access to the EUB as “a mean-spirited attack on students” and a decision that would place students’ education at risk.

“What’s changed since then?” said Sam Huggard.

ENDS For more comment contact:

David Penney Sam Huggard

National President Co-President

Aotearoa Tertiary Students Association (formerly APSU) New Zealand University Students

04 498 2507 (work) 04 498 2500 (work)

025 756 526 (cell) 025 86 86 73 (cell)


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