Responding to @ScottishLabour's manifesto Matt Crilly, @NUSScotland President, said:
“Students and apprentices across Scotland have been put at the heart of Scottish Labour’s manifesto recognising education is the pillar to recovery.
“Progressive commitments such as ensuring every education leaver has a positive destination after they complete their course makes the option of reskilling and retraining more viable to all. We know students of all ages are facing a cliff edge of unemployment after they graduate and qualify. The next government must take action to resolve this.
“Coupled with plans to offer cost of living support to all students, a special support payment and an accommodation strategy that addresses spiralling accommodation costs, these policies could be truly transformational for all those who have been priced out of education because they can’t afford the cost of learning.
“However, we need a firm commitment that additional student support won’t equate to additional student debt if we are truly to see education accessible to all.”
NUS Scotland responds to the SNP’s manifesto Scotland’s Future
Responding to @theSNP's manifesto (15th Apr 2021) Matt Crilly, @NUSScotland President, commented:
“We welcome the SNP’s manifesto Scotland’s Future, which commits to creating a landmark exchange scheme for Scotland’s students following our removal from the Erasmus+ programme earlier this year.
“Plans to introduce a digital support fund every year for the life of the next parliament and a mental health action plan for Scotland’s students are also crucial if we are to begin to tackle the plight of digital poverty and the mental health crisis on our campuses.
“It is positive to see the SNP pledge to create a student accommodation strategy to ensure students across Scotland get a fair deal and have the same rights as other tenants’.
“However, we don’t think the manifesto goes far enough in offering cost of living support to all students. The pandemic has only exacerbated what we knew before, our student support system is fundamentally broken and with students struggling to afford rent, food and basic necessities, we need urgent bursary support to ensure no student is priced out of education.”
NUS Scotland responds to Green Party Manifesto ‘Our Common Future’
Responding to the Scottish Green Party's manifesto ‘Our Common Future’, Matt Crilly NUS Scotland President said:
“The Green Party’s manifesto is a progressive pitch to student electors promising a radical overhaul in student finance, a commitment to lifeline funding over the summer months for students, and puts front and centre the urgent need for Scottish leadership if we are to tackle the climate crisis.
“We are pleased to see the Scottish Greens have heeded our calls to create a student accommodation strategy which introduces rent controls, extends tenant rights to students, and ensures a fair deal for student renters so that no student is left to choose between the cost of housing and their right to study.
“They have promised a large increase in funding for the NHS and the introduction of bursaries for student paramedics. They have also committed to protecting the college workforce, supporting estranged students and addressing the mental health crisis.
“It is positive to see the Green Party advocate for Scotland to re-join Erasmus+ after the UK Government restricted outward and inward student mobility.
“Crucially, however, the Greens have not outlined actions to address one of the biggest concerns for students– unemployment after they graduate or complete their course. We want to see a commitment to an education leavers guarantee that tackles the spiralling unemployment facing graduates of all ages.”