Media releases

Media Release: Postgraduates to join protests against the budget

16 May 17

The Council of Australian Postgraduate Associations (CAPA) will be joining the National Union of Students in non-violent protests against the 2017/18 budget occurring around the country this week.

A $3.8 billion cut to university funding will do more than just lower the quality of a university education. Cuts to funding will result in a decrease in teaching positions for postgraduate students, decreased available funding that subsidizes research training, and damage universities’ ability to innovate.

Postgraduates will also be protesting the retrospective changes to the HECS/HELP system. The decrease in the income repayment threshold will slug both graduates and postgraduates with a change in their loans that goes against basic principles of fairness.

“The entire sector is disappointed in a Federal Government that used the terms innovation and research as if they actually meant to invest in universities,” said CAPA National President Peter Derbyshire.

“Instead the Federal Government has chosen to divest from the higher education sector to the tune of $3.8 billion, a sector that provides an 8.5% boost to the nations GDP,” said Mr Derbyshire.

CAPA is encouraging all postgraduate students to attend a national day of action rally nearest them. When money is taken out of universities, no matter what programs are hit, there will always be a flow on effect. Students, staff, and universities have to stand together to protect universities.

Rally sites 17th May:
MELBOURNE: 2PM State Library (
SYDNEY: USYD: 12PM Fisher Library (
UNSW: 2PM Library Lawns (
CANBERRA: 12:30PM ANU Union Court (
BRISBANE: 1PM King Georges Square (
ADELAIDE: 3PM South Australian Parliament (
PERTH: 2PM Murray St Mall (

For Comment: Peter Derbyshire CAPA National President M:0435 047 817