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Australian Greens launch national campaign to reverse Labor’s uni cuts

Media Release
Christine Milne 30 May 2013

The Australian Greens today launched a new national campaign - Uni Cuts Hurt - to reverse Labor's $2.3 billion university funding cuts.

The Greens campaign is working for a 10 per cent increase in per student base funding, an additional $50 per week for students on Youth Allowance, greater job security and the rights of unions to enter workplaces.

As part of the campaign Greens Senators will work with university students and staff across the country to reverse the funding cuts to universities and retain student start-up scholarships.

"I met with university students and staff at Adelaide University last week and it is clear these cuts will have huge impacts including reducing the number of courses, increasing class sizes and making it impossible for students to afford basic textbooks or even public transport," Greens Leader Senator Christine Milne said.

"Labor and Tony Abbott are refusing to increase income support for students, although many of them are already struggling to make ends meet.

"These cuts will make it even tougher and students from disadvantaged backgrounds will suffer the most."

Higher education spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon said the Uni Cuts Hurt campaign will be stepped up in coming weeks, with the focus on Labor and Tony Abbot to reverse the $2.3 billion higher education cuts.

"Students are already telling us how hard it will be if start-up scholarships are turned into HECS-style loans," Senator Rhiannon said.

"The Greens are also working to protect the rights of university workers by increasing job security and winning the right of union members to engage in strike action.

"The cuts undermine quality teaching and research.

"The National Tertiary Education Union estimates Australian students' higher education debt is already growing at over $12 million dollars per day and that Labor's cuts will make it worse.

"Senator Milne and I will campaign with Greens members, students and staff to reverse the cuts and build world class higher education."

You can follow Senator Milne's campaign tour on Facebook.com/Australian.Greens

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