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Too little too late from National

Media Release

20 October 1999

Attention Education and Political Reporters

For immediate release

Too little too late from National

Max Bradfords re-announced changes to the Student Loan Scheme today are not enough, and have come too late according to student leaders.

"This government has had seven years to make changes to the student loan scheme and it has chosen not to. What Max Bradford announced today is nothing more than a pathetic pre-election bribe" said Karen Skinner Co-President of the New Zealand University Students Association (NZUSA).

"Max Bradford has continually denied that there are any problems with the loan scheme, and they have only indicated slight changes because of public outrage at the crisis that they have created" said John Barkess President of the APSU Student Union.

"The reality is National created this crisis, and they still havent done enough to get us out of it" said Ms Skinner. "National has let students accumulate over $3 billion worth of debt 96 bringing forward some half hearted changes now cannot make up for what they have done."

"If National gets in, it is likely to be in coalition with ACT. Given ACTs desire to privatise student loans, we hold dim hopes for students or the public if National gets re elected" said Mr Barkess.

"In 1998 when the National party announced the restrictions to the course related cost component of the loan scheme we showed them the impact that this would have on students. All they have done today is reverse a bad policy change" concluded Mr Barkess.

-ENDS-

For further comment contact:

Karen Skinner NZUSA: 04 498 2500 or 025 86 86 73

John Barkess APSU: 04 498 2501 or 025 756 526


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