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Budge it or Dodge it?

18 May 2005

Budge it or Dodge it?

Students at Otago Polytechnic are urging the Government to make substantial budges to Dr. Cullen's budget tomorrow.

"Student and Graduate debt has more than doubled since the 1999 Labour government was elected. With Tertiary fees embarrassingly high and decreasing numbers of students getting an allowance, the Budget needs to provide clear financial support for students." said Rachel Dibble, president of the Otago Polytechnic Students' Association.

Students are calling for the Government to move towards a living allowance for all students and zero fees rather than continuing to fail to deliver on the country's educational needs.

"Many of our leading politicians dodged being encumbered by a student loan. Will this Government continue to be part of the problem of scandalous student debt or will this Budget deliver more than just tennis balls to dodge?" queried Ms. Dibble.

Students and graduates owe over $7 Billion dollars collectively, with the average debt (while studying) impacting on Otago students to the amount of $18,123

"As the student debt crisis worsens tomorrow's budget may be Labour's last chance to attack the debt monster rather than dodge it!" said Ms. Dibble


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