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Human Rights Commission Okays Student Loan Claim

Camilla Belich
NZUSA National Women's Rights Officer

Human Rights Commission Okays Student Loan Claim

A ground-breaking claim against the student loan scheme is proceeding, after the Human Rights Commission have agreed that the scheme may discriminate against women borrowers.

"This claim is set to prove what New Zealanders have known for a decade - that the student loan scheme is unfair to women," said Camilla Belich, NZUSA's National Women's Rights Officer. "By taking twice as long as men on average to repay student loans, women are paying thousands of dollars more for their qualifications in interest payments."

"We have cleared the first hurdle in what may be one of the biggest attacks ever on a deeply unpopular loan scheme," said Belich. "This claim is a beacon of hope to women and men borrowers struggling under the burden of huge student loans."

Now that the Human Rights Commission have accepted that the student loan scheme may discriminate against women borrowers, the claim now progresses to Crown Law for their opinion.

Students will then be given an opportunity to attend mediation and appear in front of the Human Rights Review Tribunal where there will be a decision on the discriminatory nature of the student loan scheme.

"The student loan scheme is blatantly unfair to borrowers and their families. We have proved this repeatedly and hope that the government will quickly take action and adopt fairer student support policies," said Belich.

ENDS

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