Viewport width =
March 20, 2006 | by  | in News |
Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on Twitter

NZUSA challenges “unfair” allowance rule

The New Zealand University Students’ Association (NZUSA) appeared before Parliament’s Regulations Review Select Committee last Wednesday, to argue that changes to student allowance regulations have breached human rights.

The changes in question invoked the Bill of Rights on the grounds of “discrimination” to remove key criteria for eligibility to the Independent Circumstances Allowance (ICA) for working and married students. But NZUSA co-president Joey Randall argues that the alternative – means-testing students based on their parents’ income until the age of 25 – is just as discriminatory.

“It’s hypocritical to justify getting rid of one form of discrimination while entrenching another,” he says. “Right now the student allowance scheme says that all students are dependent on their parents until they turn 25. We know this is not the case as our research shows that only 28 per cent of students receive any financial support from their parents.”

A spokesperson for Minister of Education Michael Cullen says that many countries are supporting the idea that parents should accept some degree of responsibility for their children’s’ tertiary education.

According to the spokesperson, the age is set at 25 due to “constraints” on Government funding. “Lowering the age for parental income testing or abolishing it altogether would be costly, and draw resources away from other priority areas for the government, such as the interest-free student loan policy.”

The meeting was adjourned in order to investigate human rights claim made by the NZUSA, which Mr Randall says is a “complicating factor”.

Despite the fact the meeting was adjourned, the NZUSA is pleased with the progress says Randall. “What we were looking for is just basically [getting] them to in some way agree with us that the current situation is discriminatory.”

Share on FacebookShare on Google+Pin on PinterestTweet about this on Twitter

About the Author ()

Comments are closed.

Recent posts

  1. Cuttin’ it with with Miss June
  2. SWAT
  3. Ravished by the Living Embodiment of All Our University Woes
  4. New Zealand’s First Rainbow Crossing is Here (and Queer)
  5. Chloe Has a Yarn About Mental Health
  6. “Stick with Vic” Makes “Insulting” and “Upsetting” Comments
  7. Presidential Address
  8. Final Review
  9. Tears Fall, and Sea Levels Rise
  10. It’s Fall in my Heart
Website-Cover-Photo7

Editor's Pick

This Ain’t a Scene it’s a Goddamned Arm Wrestle

: Interior – Industrial Soviet Beerhall – Night It was late November and cold as hell when I stumbled into the Zhiguli Beer Hall. I was in Moscow, about to take the trans-Mongolian rail line to Beijing, and after finding someone in my hostel who could speak English, had decided