We shouldn’t have to repay our HECS debt on just above minimum wage
The Australian Parliament has just passed laws that mean university graduates will have to start repaying their student loans on just $10.80 above minimum wage (1) (2).
This is another attack on students. The government is trying to balance its books on the backs of young people.
Sign this petition to send a quick strong message that Australians stand for a fair and affordable education system that genuinely sets young people up for decent work and living conditions.
Letter To Education Minister Daniel Tehan MP
To Daniel Tehan,
Re: Young people shouldn’t have to repay their HECS debt on just above minimum wage
I want to express my deep concern at the government’s decision to lower the student loan repayment threshold.
Graduates in Australia are already struggling to find full time work in their fields. Many are struggling to pay their rent and bills. Lowering the threshold to $45 thousand will force students to pay back their debts when they are earning just above minimum wage.
This policy makes our education system less accessible and will make it much harder for young people to save and establish themselves at the beginning of their careers.
Why I started this petition:
“I’m a young person who studied a Bachelor of Digital Design at Swinburne University. It was hard for me and my university mates to gain steady employment after uni. (3) I was lucky enough to get a graduate job at Leo Burnett. As a graduate, I was paid $40 000 and struggled to pay my bills, rent and food. Even if I earned $45 000 I couldn’t imagine the stress of paying off my HECS too. I was lucky to have a safety blanket with my parents but most young Australians aren’t that fortunate.
For YOUNG people it is already hard for us to gain stable employment, and once we do get our start it’s hard to build a life. Especially when many of us are already under financial stress (4), not to mention the rising cost of living, insecure employment and unaffordable housing market across the country
Lee Strike, Founder YOUNG