Tuesday 16-03-2021 - 17:24
The Northern Ireland Assembly has today passed a motion calling on the Economy Minister to extend the Covid Disruption Payment to students who were previously excluded from the scheme. This includes further education students who make up three quarters of Northern Ireland’s 200,000 strong student population.
Ellen Fearon, NUS-USI president said, “I am delighted that MLAs have voted to support students by passing this motion. I hope that the Minister recognises this mandate and moves swiftly to extend the scheme to include those who have, so far, been left out.
“Students have experienced severe disruption to their education for over a year, and many have suffered financial stress. Students cannot access the same supports as other members of society, like Universal Credit, so it is right that they receive support which is specific to them.
“Students come in all ages, from all walks of life. They are not just students, they are parents, carers, workers and much more. I have heard from so many students this year who are really struggling to cope with the financial, emotional and academic stress they are under. Extending this payment would be a tiny step towards recognising the sacrifices they have made, and the hardships they have faced.”