THE DLP BELIEVES IN EQUITABLE ACCESS TO UNIVERSITY EDUCATION
The DLP will make the following changes to increase the quality of life for students and to ensure equitable access to university education.
The DLP believes in retaining Start Up Scholarships and making the following changes to the Social Security Act 1991 (Cth):
Raise the level of student income support payments to the Henderson poverty line.
Increase the parental means test threshold to the level of Average Weekly Earnings.
Lower the age of independence from 22 to 18 and
Reintroduce Centrelink counters at university campuses.
The DLP also calls for at least 30% of the Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF) to be provided directly to student groups for their provision of student services. Providing a proportion of the SSAF directly to student groups is in keeping with the DLP’s principles of decentralization, distributism and industrial (in this case student) democracy.
The formation of undergraduate students is a time of utmost importance for both the students, and the future of the nation.
Start Up Scholarships help ease the burden of costs that students are faced with at the start of a semester, but currently student income support payments are at less than 70% of the Henderson poverty line.
We also believe that having Centrelink counters at university campuses will be of immense benefit to students who are often tied to tight weekly schedules, as well as cutting the waiting queues at Centrelink offices.
Students are further charged a Student Services and Amenities Fee of $263 which can be deferred through a HECS-style income loan. These funds are provided to universities, with the purpose of funding additional student services on campuses like sporting facilities, advocacy and healthcare services.
Some services are, however, run by the students such as advocacy, culture and representation, and they deserve a fair proportion of the SSAF.
RAISE LEVEL OF STUDENT SUPPORT
The DLP will raise the level of student income support payments to the Henderson poverty line.
RISE IN MEANS TEST THRESHOLD
The DLP will increase the parental means test threshold to the level of Average Weekly Earnings.
REDUCE AGE OF INDEPENDENCE
The DLP will lower the age of independence from 22 to 18.
The DLP will reintroduce Centrelink counters at university campuses.
SPLIT SSAF FEES
The DLP calls for at least 30% of Student Services and Amenities Fees to be provided directly to student groups.