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Student Summit demands an end to Debt

30 June 2005

Student Summit demands an end to Debt

Student representatives from all over New Zealand will gather at Auckland University Students’ Association (AUSA) tomorrow for the first student debt summit since the last election.

“This Government has done too little to ease the student debt crisis during the last 6 years and we have yet to hear from either Labour or National what they would do to tackle this crisis if elected. Students are sick of being ignored,” said Camilla Belich, Co-President of the New Zealand University Students’ Association (NZUSA).

“Students know the answer to the $7 billion dollar student debt crisis, what we are looking for is political parties who are willing to listen,” Belich said.

The Demand an end to Debt Summit is the first day of a three day national conference where the student movement will plan their election campaign and set tackling student debt as key issue for this election.

“Student fees are higher than ever before and some of the highest fees in the country are paid right here in Auckland,” said Greg Langton, President of AUSA.

“We know high fees and lack of student allowances are the main drivers of student debt and the fact that all major political parties are fronting up to our Debt Summit proves that student debt is a key issue this election,” Langton said.

The NZUSA Demand and end to Debt Summit and July Conference will be held at Auckland University Students’ Association (AUSA), Alfred St, Auckland from 1-3 July.

***********List of key event times***********

NZUSA Conference and Demand an end to Debt Summit Key event times:

Friday, 1 July 2005– Demand an end to Debt Summit Time: 9.30 am – 6pm Venue: Engineering Lecture Theatre 401 401, University of Auckland, Symonds St, Auckland. Highlights:

John Minto – “Free Education in the 21st Century” at 10am

Jane Kelsey – “The privatisation and commercialisation of tertiary education in New Zealand and overseas” at 11.15am

Raymond Miller – “The political climate: is education an election issue” at 1pm

Helen Potter – “Student Debt and Maori” at 1.45pm

Laila Harre – “Student Debt is a workers issue” at 2.30pm

Political panel: ‘Solving the $7 billion dollar problem’ at 4pm, with Peter Dunne (United Future), Bill English (National), Brian Donnelly (NZ First), Lynne Pillay (Labour), Matt Robson (Progressives), Deborah Coddington (ACT) and a representative from the Maori Party.

Sunday, 3 July 2005– Minister of Education Hon. Trevor Mallard addresses students Time: 12 noon – 1pm Venue: Engineering Lecture Theatre 401 401, University of Auckland, Symonds St, Auckland.

ENDS


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