On eve of BC budget, students launch campaign to stop student debt squeeze

VANCOUVER, Feb. 18, 2014 /CNW/ - Students feeling squeezed by high tuition fees and growing student debt have launched a campaign calling on the BC government to make post-secondary education more affordable. The campaign, called Squash the Squeeze, targets tuition fess, student debt, and institutional funding as keys to accessibility and quality for universities and colleges.

"Students have been feeling the squeeze of student debt for too long", said Jenelle Davies, Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students-BC, "Now, more than ever, students and their families pay more and get less from post-secondary education."

Tuition fees in BC have more than doubled since 2001, while funding for post-secondary education has decreased in relation to inflation. In 2003, the provincial student grants program was eliminated, leaving students and their families with few options other than loans. The interest charged on student loans in BC is the highest in the country.

"Institutions also feel the squeeze from decades of underfunding", added Davies. "The only way to ensure students have the necessary skills for jobs of the future is to invest in our institutions."

The Canadian Federation of Students-BC is composed of post-secondary students from 15 universities and colleges in every region in BC. Post-secondary students in Canada have been represented by the Canadian Federation of Students and its predecessor organizations since 1927.

SOURCE Canadian Federation of Students- British Columbia

For further information:

Jenelle Davies, Chairperson   (604) 341-6850
Zachary Crispin, spokesperson  (604) 355-5014