People Before Profit councillor for Carlow Adrienne Wallace said that Ireland is facing a student accommodation crisis and that the government need to take action immediately to make sure students have access to affordable accommodation.
Cllr Wallace said: “Governments over the past ten years and particularly this government have failed to resolve the housing crisis which is evident on multiple fronts- lack of social housing, affordable housing and homelessness.
“One area in particular which has become evident over the last number of weeks is the provision of affordable student accommodation. Many students are facing a major crisis as they enter third level or return to third level because of a lack of affordable student accommodation. Many students are having to defer, having to sleep in hotels or on friends’ couches.
Cllr Wallace continued: “This is for a young population who have been particularly badly affected by the Covid crisis. They have had to miss out on the in person/on campus experience. They have had to deal with the incredibly stressful leaving cert situation and the points race. Now many are faced with the acute crisis where they get into college but do not have anywhere affordable to live.
“Nationally we have a situation where we are building very expensive, privately-run, for-profit student accommodation and hotels, but we do not have the affordable student accommodation that we need at a local level. What is needed is for the state to provide subsidised affordable student accommodation and to control rents.”