Extending eligibility to student support to people who were affected by the Christchurch mosques terror attack
In 2020, the Government decided to make it easier for students affected by the Christchurch mosques terror attack to pursue their tertiary education and career goals.
The Government waived the three-year residence stand-down period applicable to student loans, student allowances and Fees Free payments for people with a Christchurch Response (2019) Permanent Resident Visa and people who would have been eligible for this visa but were already holding another residence visa. This means, if these residents access tertiary education, they can have their fees met through the Fees Free policy, or fees and living costs met through student loans or allowances (provided they meet the standard eligibility requirements).
This change provides further targeted support for those most affected by the terror attack. It recognises the need for a compassionate response to their tertiary education and career needs and goals. It will also help them settle in New Zealand and support their long-term contribution to and participation in New Zealand’s society and economy.
The Government also decided to exclude income in the form of gifts and donations made to a person affected by the Christchurch mosques terror attack from the student allowances income tests. This provides certainty that this type of financial support will not affect entitlement to student allowances.
The table below details advice provided that relates to this work. This includes the advice prepared by the Ministry of Social Development, which can also be accessed here: https://www.msd.govt.nz/about-msd-and-our-work/publications-resources/information-releases/student-allowances-amendment-regulations-2020.html(external link)
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