Studylink is notorious for causing a lot of stress for students. If we want to see change, we need to make a stand and make them do something about it.
Paula Bennett is the Minister of Social Development and Employment, and therefore responsible for Studylink and its operations.
If we don't tell her that she needs to do something about it, who will?
WHAT WE WANT:
> People who answer our phone calls who know and understand plain english
> One set of rules for everyone
> Less letters, especially duplicates dated a couple of days apart and the ones requesting information we sent in weeks ago
> More user friendly website
> Clearly set out criteria for receiving allowances, that is fair and reasonable given the situation most students are in (for example: parents who earn to much, but do not assist financially - and no you do not have to have a family breakdown for this to happen)
> More reasonable thresholds for parental income assessment
> Dependants under the age of 16 to be counted as dependents - its not like just cos they are under 16 their parents don't need to use any of their income to raise them!
> More reasonable expectations on how much it costs a student to survive - a living allowance should actually cover the cost of living, not just the rent - what about food, power, phone etc???
> Individual case managers. Every time you ring up the person you speak to stuffs up your application even more than the person the last time, and then when you finally work out there is an error it takes a supervisor an hour to undo the mess!