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Students Must Prepare For Long Delays

The news that Massey University is going to delay fee announcements until December is set to destroy the Work and Income New Zealand Student Service division.

Massey @ Wellington (formerly Wellington Polytechnic) Student Association President elect Matt Davies is warning students and institutes to expect delays of up to five weeks before Loans and Allowances can be processed next year.

"At a National Hui last weekend we were warned by WINZ managers that if students don't enrol early there could be delays of up to five weeks. At that time the question was asked 'What are you going to do about that?' and they replied if people applied early there would be no problems. If they apply late then that is their own problem."

"The National Manager said they would have the trained staff in place to deal with normal application flows. They went on to say that there was no way they could put extra staff in place to cater for sudden influxes."

"With the announcement that Massey is delaying fee announcement it logically follows that students will delay study announcements so WINZ will be flooded at the last minute. The government must move now to prevent a disaster next year."

At the beginning of 1999 students experienced massive delays in receiving allowance payments from WINZ which put huge pressure on Student Associations foodbanks and hardship funds.

"We weathered the storm for one year," said Mr. Davies, "but there is no way after our funds have been depleted by the governments draconian attempts to shut us down we could support the students through another crisis of that size."


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