After sending more than 150 emails to landlords and receiving just two replies, a 21-year-old student is living out of her car in Galway city as her search to find accommodation has become dire.
University of Galway student Jessica McGirr said the Budget 2023 measures that have been announced for students are positive, but they don’t help to address the issue that there are very few rentals available in the country.
She welcomes that the student contribution fee has been reduced by €500, saying it will especially benefit students whose parents don’t qualify for the SUSI grant but they pay their own fees.
A student nurse has said he has slept in his car between work placement shifts to try to avoid the rising cost of fuel.
Jake Benjamin Smart is a mental health student nurse at Ulster University’s Magee campus in Londonderry.
The third-year student is calling on the Department of Health to increase the travel allowance paid to students.
Health Minister Robin Swann announced an increase in payments for most health and social care workers last month.
In a statement, the Department of Health said they are reviewing the mileage rate to be paid to students for the next academic year, starting in September.
Speaking to BBC Radio Foyle, the third-year nursing student said that himself and many of his peers are struggling during the cost-of-living crisis.
We are really in trouble when our uni students and our nurses are reduced to sleeping in their cars as they can’t find a place to rent and the rent to pay for it.
All homelessness is a very distressing problem.
And it’s on the increase.
The primary responsibility for this lies with the government.
The government needs to ompose fines on the owners of empty properties.
They should also impose rent caps on landlords.
The right to shelter is a basic human right
The Churches, including the RCC should not be allowed to have big empty properties.
Jesus did say:
“I was a stranger and you made me welcome”.