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Doctors versus Nurses?

Media Release

Thursday, 30 March 2006
Attention: Education and Political reporters
For immediate release

Doctors versus Nurses?

This Saturday's removal of the interest component from student debt will patch up one of the more unjust aspects of the student debt scheme. When fees were dramatically increased in the 1990s the government was forced to introduce a loans scheme or tertiary study would truly become limited to those with wealthy parents.

However, the debt scheme introduced a new form of this inequity. The interest component on student debt means that lower paid graduates and people who take time out of the workforce for care for children are disadvantaged.

A low-paid graduate will pay more interest on their loans simply because they take longer to pay it. This can often mean that such a lower paid graduate could end up paying more in total for their education than a higher paid graduate.

"This creates the crazy situation where a nursing qualification costs more than a doctor's qualification." said Richard Mitchell, OPSA Co-president.

This Saturday the introduction of interest free on student debt comes into force and will end this inequity of the debt scheme.

"While this doesn't solve the debt problem, it is a good step in the right direction" said Richard Mitchell, OPSA Co-president.


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