The higher education students’ advocacy organisations the National Union of University Students in Finland SYL and University of Applied Sciences Students in Finland SAMOK together with the Family Federation of Finland Väestöliitto urges the Government to enact a provider supplement to improve the severe economic situation of students with children.
“One in six students has a child. 20,000 students with children are studying at Finnish higher education institutions and dependent on the student financial aid. The cuts in student financial aid that will come into effect in August will weaken the finances of especially student families. By legislating a 100 euro provider supplement to the student financial aid, the Government could compensate student families for the negative effects of the cuts to the student financial aid,” comments SAMOK President Anni Koivisto.
“In the 2020s, the dependency ratio in Finland will be the weakest in all of the European Union. At the same time, the Student Health Survey shows that many students put off having children because of their financial situation and due to inflexible study arrangements. There are many ways to make life easier for student families, but a provider supplement for the student financial aid plays a key role in this,” underlines SYL President Riina Lumme.
The Family Federation is worried that students are unwillingly putting off getting children. “It is important to support young adults who would like to have children. Research shows that many would like to have children earlier. Income struggles make students move having children later and prolongs studies – many do not graduate until close to their thirties. We also need to keep in mind that when having children is postponed to later, also the risk of infertility increases,” comments Director Eija Koivuranta from Väestöliitto.
Today – on 13 March – SYL, SAMOK and Väestöliitto launch a campaign for a provider supplement. During the campaign, the organisations will publish blog posts by experts and peer supporters on the topic.
Social Policy Adviser Silja Silvasti, +358 41 515 2233, firstname.lastname@example.org
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