Students have better alternative to VSM - NZUSA
Tue, 27 Sep 2011 7:36a.m.
New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations (NZUSA) co-president David Do says students have proposed a “balanced solution” instead of a Government bill which will make student union membership voluntary.
Mr Do says students support the current law, under which they are automatically enrolled in the union and must “apply to opt out based on conscientious objection or financial hardship”.
“[Students] oppose ACT’s bill, that’s why they are protesting, and they feel increasingly frustrated and appalled that the Government is continuing to ignore their voice on this issue,” he says.
Mr Do says NZUSA has proposed “a better way to improve the current law” by implementing a “KiwiSaver-style” scheme which would make it easier for students to opt out.
“We believe that is far better than ACT’s quite extreme bill… sadly National has ignored that proposal to date.
“National still have an opportunity to take that on board.”
Auckland students protested against Voluntary Student Membership (VSM) yesterday with a rally, followed by around 200 students occupying the university’s business school.
Students blocked police from leaving and knocked over a security guard, but Mr Do says he believes the protest was peaceful.
“My understanding is that students peacefully entered, peacefully stayed and peacefully exited the building,” he says.
“Congratulations to the students for standing up for their education and their voice.”
The bill is expected to pass its third reading tomorrow. Mr Do says “students will be continuing to show their opposition” before the reading.
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27/09/2011 4:04:52 p.m.
@kk, Exactly there is no return all those "perks" are complete rubbish. Cracumm is such a waste of money its not even useful as toilet paper, the radio station isnt even good and the bookshop is a rip off even with our grand 10% off everything and you have to pay for the lockers anyway, what a joke. im arguing that if you like those perks then pay for them but why should i be forced to pay for that rubbish that i don't even use. even though AUSA is voluntary they still force me to pay for it.
27/09/2011 3:24:33 p.m.
if it wasnt for the unions fighting on students behalf, the cost of going to university would be out of reach for all of those who aren't part of the minority of rich families. what the media dont seem to want to tell people is that, 1/ you already have the choice to opt out of the union if u wish and 2/ voluntary membership means you have to come up with that money if you want to join( ie its not considered part of the university fees and therefore not covered by studylink).
on top of that, this bill only came around because of some stupid idiots from victoria university, which victoria university students voted for in te first place, wasting the money on stupid shit like decking out a stupid van with everything from hydraulics to fluffy seat covers.
not every student union is full of idiots. the waikato university union actually does some good. laugh all you want and the free food thats given out each day but for a lot of students that may be the only decent food they get. if this government really wanted to help students they would opt for a universal student allowance and for pitys-sake give students more a week than those bludging off the benefit.
27/09/2011 3:17:47 p.m.
Matt - no return? I am not sure which uni you go to but at Auckland there is cracumm, the radio, the bookshop, SJS, Shadows.. not to mention the clubs, parent space, lockers, the markets, AUSA organises a security team and a helpdesk, and during orientation, the diary, and all the entertainment at beginning and end of semesters. Not to mention all the support they offer!! Tell me you don't use any of these things? Another note - AUSA is not compulsory.
27/09/2011 2:24:34 p.m.
im glad that this bill is passing, as a student i dont agree with the amount of money im forced to pay and get no return out of it contrary to what the NZUSA say. Why dont you listen to real students and ask them if they are happy paying +$260 and getting no return out of it.
27/09/2011 1:48:12 p.m.
The largest union/organisation that requires compulsory paid membership in New Zealand is the nation of New Zealand. I don't 'opt out' of paying my taxes because I don't want to subsidise healthcare or education of other people in New Zealand. I don't demand the government kick National from government just beacause I didn't vote for him and don't want him to represent me. Student unions have an important role in maintenance of university life.
27/09/2011 10:12:15 a.m.
I never asked for this David Do man to represent me. The way he speaks down to everybody on TV and in real life creeps me out.
And I don't mention the fibs he told.
27/09/2011 9:54:01 a.m.
The students association is a group elected with no majority mandate, in elections with almost no turnout. There are several hundred students (out of 20,000+ in Auckland University alone) protesting. There is an enormous silent majority who do not want to pay into, or get (lame) service from student associations. I do not want to subsidise clubs, cheap lunches, counselling, or even Mr Do himself. None of that helps my education. I suggest the protestors keep it up though, as they are obviously the ones sponging off the rest of us and it would greatly help the identification process if more photos were published.
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