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SGM passes $0 VUWSA membership fee for 2012

SGM passes $0 VUWSA Membership fee for 2012

Students have voted to remove the Victoria University of Wellington Students’ Association (VUWSA) membership fee for 2012 in light of the passing the ACT Party’s Education (Freedom of Association) Amendment Act 2011.

A Special General Meeting on Thursday 13 October unanimously passed a proposal put forward by the VUWSA Executive aimed at ensuring VUWSA remained strong and independent.

President Seamus Brady said the legislative change means VUWSA’s mandate and ability to represent students will now be based on how many members it has from 2012.

“We must now fight to remain independent, but we can only do that if we are on a sustainable footing with a strong membership. Having a strong level of VUWSA membership is the best way to ensure there remains an independent student voice at Victoria.”

“VUWSA wants to ensure that there are no financial barriers that may deter students from gaining independent representation and having a voice in issues that affect them,” said Brady.

Brady went on to highlight that despite some services potentially being funded by the Student Service Levy, it would not undermine overall independence of VUWSA.

“This would ensure universal access to certain services that should be universally accessible such as student support services and student media. Funding would be ring-fenced and governed jointly by students and the University.”

“VUWSA’s representative function will always be 100% independent and financially separate from the University,” said Brady.

Other students’ associations including those at Auckland, Otago, Canterbury, and AUT Universities have moved to a $0 levy already as a result of voluntary student membership.