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No Surprise 90,000 Young People Not Studying or Working



17 MAY 2017

That nearly 90,000 young people are not in employment, education or training (NEET) is yet another symptom of rising living costs and insufficient government support for students, according to the Aotearoa Students’ Alliance.

“For a decade, the Government has sent a clear signal to young people that education after high school is a privilege for wealthy families. Young people are responding as expected: by avoiding the material hardship that is now part and parcel of being a student”, says Jack Close, spokesperson for the Aotearoa Students’ Alliance.

“The cost of accommodation in New Zealand’s biggest cities are routinely greater than loan living costs payments and student allowance benefits, without even accounting for bills and food. It is no surprise that young people are coming out of school and opting against going into education or training.”

“A recent New Zealand Union of Students Associations survey shows that nearly a third of students are opting out of buying food to meet the ever-growing cost of living. Prospective students face a massive trade-off between becoming qualified, and living in poverty.”

“It is no surprise that the number of young people not in employment, education or training is at the highest level since 2011, as rental costs climb under this Government’s economic and regulatory mismanagement.”

“Minister of Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Paul Goldsmith’s recent comments that the 90,000 young people not in employment, education or training are simply ‘taking time off’, and ‘having some fun’ are clear evidence that the Government is either clueless or vapid – or both.”


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