The Green Party announced today that, in government, it will provide genuine support for students by bringing in a universal post-graduate student allowance and increasing allowance rates for all students.
“The rise in the cost of living and higher rents are making life increasingly hard for students, and the Green Party has a plan to fix that,” said Green Party leader James Shaw.
“We will create a universal allowance for all post-graduate students and increase the base student allowance rate by 20 percent, as a first step towards a universal allowance for all students.
“With the universal post-graduate allowance, all post-graduate students under 24 years old and not living with their parents will receive $237 a week.
“Raising all allowances means that all eligible students under 24 years old not living with their parents will receive $39.50 more every week than they do now, and students over 24 not living with their parents will receive an extra $47.50 a week.
“This will reverse National’s short-sighted cuts and help encourage more students into post-graduate study, which we need if we are going to grow a smart, innovative economy.
“In addition to the rises in allowances, we are announcing our entire students package, which will help every single person in tertiary study or training.
“Our student Green Card guarantees free off-peak transport for all tertiary students and apprentices, saving students an additional $33 a week on average.
“We are also committed to quadrupling funding for student disability support services to $112 per student with disabilities.
“Students learning crucial skills like medicine and dentistry should be supported to complete their degrees, so we will abolish the seven year cap on student loans.
“In government, the Green Party will support Labour’s plan for three free years of tertiary education.
“New Zealand needs smart tertiary policy that values the contribution students make to our economy and society, and in Government we will make that a reality,” said Mr Shaw.