Students Support Alliance Plans for "A Fair Go"
"Tertiary students applaud efforts by the Alliance to give students a fair go over summer. Broken Government promises have meant that many students are forced to rely on foodbanks and hardship grants to make do over summer," said Aotearoa Tertiary Student Association (ATSA) President Keith Clark .
“Both Government partners have previously pledged to reintroduce the Emergency Unemployment Benefit (EUB) which would restore universal access to the student community wage” said Clark. “This initiative will only cost the Government another $14 million yet will prevent extreme hardship for many students. It is important to note that the changes do not require a legislative change – it just needs the Labour hierarchy to agree to the necessary finance”.
This Coalition Government has often expressed commitment to remove unjust and discriminatory policies left by the previous National Government. Since a cabinet decision by the National Party in 1998, only those students who are eligible for student allowances (around 35% of students) during term time qualified for summer income support. “The move meant that students were the only group in society with no back-up if unable to find to find work or other support” said Keith Clark.
ATSA supports the Alliance bid to become the “student friendly” political party. “Labour’s cries of outrage at the National Party cutbacks were deafening in Opposition, yet now in Government they seem to have forgotten about student summer hardship” said Clark. “The pressure is now clearly on Labour to support the Alliance initiative or risk a student backlash” said Clark.
For Further Comment Contact:
Keith Clark, ATSA National President
Cell phone 025 756 526