Govt Ignores Students and Supports ACT Proposition
Government ignores submissions and votes to devastate students’ associations: $62 million dollar Campus Hub Project at risk
National Party members of the Education and Science Select Committee have voted to support the ACT Party in its efforts to put an end to accountable and effective student representation and services.
“Student support services, advocacy, representation, clubs, events and our contribution to major building projects like the recently tendered $62 million Campus Hub are now at serious risk”, said Max Hardy, VUWSA President.
“The National Party seems to have chosen to ignore the major practical implications of this Bill, in favour of ACT Party ideology.”
“This decision, which flies in the face of 98% of the submissions on the Bill, puts in jeopardy the quality of education and the student experience across New Zealand.”
“VUWSA will be put in a position where it can no longer continue its significant contribution to students and to education at Victoria.”
The Committee received 4837 submissions on the Bill, with an overwhelming 98% opposed. Victoria University of Wellington were amongst those that submitted strongly against the Bill.
“The fact that the Select Committee chose to ignore not only students and students’ associations, but also the education institutions themselves, beggar’s belief”, said Hardy.
The change means that students can no longer choose whether their students’ association is voluntary or universal – instead voluntary membership is imposed on them. This means that students’ association levies can no longer be paid with a student loan, like all other education-related fees.
The evidence from Australia is that services and representation will be decimated on many campuses and cost tax-payers and students even more.
This move is bourn out of ACT Party ideology, and achieves nothing for students at all. It is disappointing to see National support such an unpopular move.