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USI is supporting Sinn Féin Bill giving students living in student specific accommodation the full protection of the Residential Tenancies Acts

The Union of Students in Ireland (USI) is supporting the Sinn Féin Bill giving students living in student specific accommodation under license the full protection of the Residential Tenancies Acts. The support comes after recent months saw DCU Students’ Union and NUI Galway Students’ Union protesting rent hikes before term ends this year.

In DCU, students are looking at paying up to €7,000 for the academic year, with the rent looking to increase to €9,000 starting next term. Students in NUI Galway are protesting a €1,000 rent hike in accommodation introduced by provider Cúirt na Coiribe. USI has strongly opposed these rent hikes, and wants this trend to stop.

Speaking ahead of the discussion in the Dáil, USI President Michael Kerrigan said:

“This spike in rental costs is making student accommodation and higher education unaffordable for students, and is pushing them back into the already overcrowded private rental sector and away from third level institutions. Legislation like this would mean that student accommodation providers would have to adhere to the rent pressure zone legislation. It’s time we stopped treating students like cash cows.”

Purpose-built student accommodation is not subject to rent restrictions of 4% introduced in late 2016 as Rent Pressure Zones due to differences in regulation like other private accommodation. USI is calling on the Government to introduce this new legislation to include both private and college owned purpose built student accommodation.

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