Everyday builders, engineers, teachers, scientists, TV presenters, mechanics, and many more workers have to think about how they impact on the planet and climate.

This means that the new vocational education and training system being set up by the government needs to ensure it has a focus on addressing climate change.

Te Hautū Kahurangi | Tertiary Education Union is launching a petition today at the inaugural U35* conference to ensure that climate change is one of the considerations for the proposed New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology.

National President, Michael Gilchrist, says there is a mandate to ensure the wellbeing of learners is looked after, that the needs of industry are addressed, and both these groups are reliant on NZIST to also helping to address the needs of the planet.

“It’s simple. If we want clean water, people who understand about their carbon footprint, and people who can grow food sustainably for example, we need training that helps people understand and help solve climate change, and who can help New Zealand address the myriad of implications of climate disruption.”

U35 members raised the issue last year with the Minister of Education and are asking everyone to help them get the considerations high on the agenda when parliament reads the Education (Vocational Education and Training Reform) Amendment Bill for a second and third time.

U35 organiser Daniel Benson-Guiu says we’re encouraging all New Zealanders to sign up for a vocational education sector that not only cares for people and business, but cares for the planet as well.

Media contacts

Michael Gilchrist, National President, +64 27 899 4256

Daniel Benson-Guiu, TEU Organiser, +64 22 312 1439

*U35 is the youth wing of the Tertiary Education Union.