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Hands Up Who Else Wants Student Debt Relief…

On the eve of the Minister of Youth Affairs’ student debt summit, the Government is being warned that it cannot limit relief of student loan debt to just doctors and must come up with a fairer repayments scheme for everyone.

This Friday the Hon Laila Harre, in association with the National Student Associations, is holding a summit focusing on the impact of student debt on New Zealand’s young people.

The summit will hear from people like Lucia Fell, a student nurse at Nelson Polytechnic and the Chairperson of the National Student Unit of the New Zealand Nurses Organisation.

Ms Fell will outline how inequitable the student loans scheme is for female-dominated professions like nursing and how the average student loan repayment time for a female is twice that for a male.

National President of the Aotearoa Tertiary Students Association, David Penney, will speak of the need for the Government to stop talking about plugging leaks in the student loan scheme, with its suggestions for debt relief on junior doctors, and instead overhaul the whole student loans scheme.

“We think it is grossly unfair to single out doctors for debt relief. The student debt burden is felt by the whole community and each and every person with a student debt is entitled to relief,” said David Penney.

“The student debt summit will reveal that the whole of the community, not just the Health Sector, is affected by the student loans scheme,” said David Penney.

The student loans summit is being held at the National Library, Molesworth St Wellington, Friday 25 August 2000 and starts at 10am with a keynote address from Laila Harre.

ENDS For more comment contact:

David Penney

025 756 526 (cell) 04 498 2507 (work)

David Penney National President Aotearoa Tertiary Students' Association (formerly APSU) PO Box 10 191 Wellington New Zealand Phone 04 498 2507 Mobile 025 756 526 Fax 04 499 6554


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