Senators: Stand against education reforms that disadvantage women
CAMPAIGN UPDATE: Fair Agenda members have hand delivered your signatures to key crossbench Senators around the country, showing the community opposes education reforms that would disadvantage women.
Up to $45,000 – that’s the amount of extra interest women could end up paying on their degree under the Government’s proposed tertiary education overhaul, a legislation package being negotiated right now.
Researchers have shown that the Government's proposed changes to university loan interest will effectively operate as a ‘double whammy’ for many women. First because the gender pay gap extends the time women need to pay off their debt (during which their debt will grow), and then again because any woman who takes time off work to care for children will see their debt grow further in this time.
The cross bench Senators could be expected to vote on these changes as soon as next week. Can you make sure they hear loud and clear that their constituents don’t want education changes that disadvantage women? Sign and share the petition; and local Fair Agenda members will deliver your messages to the Senators' offices this week.
 The Abbott Government’s planned de-regulation of uni degrees to hit women the hardest, National Tertiary Education Union, 26 June 2014. Figure based on a three-year accountancy degree, currently costing $30,255, which would climb to about $75,000. The repayments on the degree would grow to $120,000 – including $45,000 in interest, for graduates who take time off to have children and then work part-time. The degree would take 36 years to pay off – compared with 10 years for a typical graduate today. This compares with 23 years for an accountancy graduate who stays in the workforce, who would face repayments of $99,000 - including $24,000 of interest. ‘Women to be hit hardest by student loan debt’, Sydney Morning Herald, 27 May 2014.
HECS upon you: NATSEM models the real impact of higher uni fees, The Conversation, 25 June 2014. ‘Pyne’s education policies hurt women – but the men in cabinet don’t seem to have noticed’, The Guardian, 11 August 2014.