June 2024

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Students’ Union Calls for Ban on Mandatory 51 Week Student Leases


Students’ Union Calls for Ban on Mandatory 51 Week Student Leases

Comhaltas na Mac Léinn Ollscoil na Gaillimhe today call on the Government to expedite plans to introduce promised legislation to ban mandatory 51 week student leases, before the Dáil goes into recess on 15th July. An Taoiseach Simon Harris has said on multiple occasions, both as Minister for Further & Higher Education, and in his current role, that this issue would be addressed, and although a memo was brought to cabinet at the end of May, legislation has yet to be introduced.

The academic year will run from 9th September to 9th of May, almost 35 weeks, for University of Galway students in 2024/25. Having to pay an extra 16 weeks of rent outside of term time leaves students and their families under huge financial pressure. This extra cost, in the continuing cost of living crisis, is a huge barrier to accessing education.

Students’ Union President Dean Kenny said: “51 week mandatory leases for students are unfair, unnecessary and take advantage of students who neither want nor need a lease for that length of time.  It is imperative that this issue is addressed before the Dáil goes into recess. A failure to do so will result in more unnecessary hardship and additional costs for students, allowing landlords and private providers to take advantage, as we have already seen on multiple occasions this year in Galway. Particularly in the case of Hubble Living student accommodation, who attempted to raise rents by more than 30% for the upcoming academic year.”