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Win on student debt: time to dump entire higher education bill

Media Release
Lee Rhiannon 20 Oct 2014

The Greens have said the Government's backdown on interest rate changes to student debt is a tribute to the strong community opposition to the Pyne higher education bill and underlines that it's time to dump the entire package. 

"The win on student debt is thanks to the mobilisation and activism of thousands of students, their families and unions against Mr Pyne's higher education bills," said Greens higher education spokesperson Lee Rhiannon.

"Minister Pyne's decision to remove the interest rate component of his bill should now be extended to the entire regressive package which will strip away opportunity from thousands of students and their families. 

"Deregulation is poison to students and regional Australia and will still result in fees over $100,000 for some courses.

"While students and families are saddled with exorbitant debt under the Pyne plan private higher education providers are set to profit from public money that should be allocated to public universities.

"$450 million is earmarked for private higher education providers over three years, at a time when the level of per student government funding in Australia is well below the OECD average.

"The sooner we dump this elitist higher education bill, the sooner we can start a discussion about how to ensure higher education is accessible and empowering for all," said Senator Rhiannon.

Contact: Brami Jegan 0487 350 880

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