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PSU never objected to student loans – Vanloo

PSU never objected to  student loans – Vanloo


President of the Public Service Union (PSU) Cools Vanloo says he is not against money being put aside to be used to finance the education of the nation’s youth.{{more}}

Speaking to SEARCHLIGHT on Wednesday, Vanloo reacted to a comment made by the prime minister during a press conference on September 11.

At that press briefing, Gonsalves accused Vanloo of wanting the money which was to be used to go towards student loans, to be used to pay salary increases for public servants.

“Presumably he wants the five and a half million dollars or whatever portion of that to come to the three per cent and in fact, he explicitly said that students can wait, who want to go off to university,” Gonsalves said.

But the union’s president refuted this, saying that the members of the PSU had no difficulty on the issue, except that the money being made available is being done so as loans.

“It is the people sending their children off who have to pay,” Vanloo explained.

“These are not grants; they will have to pay,” he continued.

According to the PSU’s President, interest payments will have to be paid when the students are in university and the loans will have to be paid back after graduation, whether the individual is employed or not.

“Some of these people have mortgages to pay and have children attending school … how are they expected to make loan payments without getting the adjustments to their salaries that allows them to do that?” he questioned.

“Saying that we objected … nonsense; we never objected to anything!”

He explained that the concern was how would PSU members be able to pay, if they have not received their three per cent.

There was no increase in 2011 and very little hope in 2012, Vanloo said.

“Already they are seven to eight per cent behind in cost of living, so how are they going to cope?”

There were a lot of people who do not have the flexibility or space in their finances to go on, he said. (DD)