Students are requesting an urgent meeting with Prime Minister John Key after a bill to make student union membership voluntary passed its second reading last night. Student unions and queer campus groups believe student services, representation, and welfare provisions are under threat from the Act Party Bill after it was voted through on its Second Reading in Parliament tonight. "It is not too late for John Key to step in and save over a century of student representation and services from the Act Party," says NZUSA co-President David Do. "NZUSA, as the national representative body for tertiary students, is requesting he meet with us urgently to re-consider his Government's support of the Act Party Bill. John Key met with Warner Brothers to save The Hobbit - we are asking he do the same to save the important services and experiences students' associations provide for university and polytechnic students in New Zealand. "National said it wanted to listen to students and the public when they supported the Bill going to Select Committee. New Zealanders have made it clear that they do not support this legislation - over 4800 submissions were received by the Select Committee on the Bill, and an overwhelming 98% were against," says co-president Pene Delaney. "Students are looking to John Key for his sensible leadership and pragmatism at this time. National has said it doesn't want to destroy associations yet this is exactly what this Act Bill will do on many campuses," says Delaney. Queer student groups are worried that an expected drastic drop in funding will have a heavy impact on their ability to support GLBT university students.
Credit: GayNZ.com Daily News staff
First published: Thursday, 11th November 2010 - 9:22am
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