1,000 signatures reached
To: The University of Melbourne
Greater Financial Support for Students
In Semester 1, UMSU was successful in getting the University to introduce its Emergency Support Fund. Over 11,000 students accessed this scheme and now, more than ever, students need the University to provide financial support as the impact of the pandemic worsens.
While that process was not problem free and we have continued to argue for it to be improved, Semester 2 is now well underway and the University refuses to spell out exactly how, or if, it will provide financial support to students.
This is not okay — the University should have told us all what they would do to support students well before the semester commenced. We need your help.
We need the University to provide immediate financial support to students.
The University should:
(1) Extend and improve its Emergency Support Fund to make sure it helps the students that most need it. This could take the form of payments to meet the costs of food, bills and rent, which students urgently need.
(2) Introduce flexibility in their financial support so that students can get support in the way that helps them most — for example, to reduce course fees for international students to help ease the immense financial stress felt by them and their families.
(3) Allow flexibility and negotiated payment plans for all up-front fee-paying students.
Why is this important?
We are worried about students who are struggling to pay for rent, food and bills, and when Centrelink payments are reduced in October this will only get worse.
We are worried about international students and their families who are struggling to pay course fees, and the obvious impacts this will have.
Students are suffering and the University’s response to this has been silence.
The University needs to act – and it needs to act now.