01 Oct 2022

Longford students must be refunded accommodation fees by private providers – Flaherty

Longford students must be refunded accommodation fees by private providers – Flaherty

Longford students must be refunded accommodation fees by private providers – Flaherty

Fianna Fáil TD for Longford, Joe Flaherty says those providing private student accommodation must return prepaid rents to students who have had to go home as a result of the ongoing Covid-19 crisis.

Deputy Flaherty said it was unfair of private landlords to keep prepaid rents when students are not living in the accommodation and can ill-afford to pay for it.

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He explained, “Thankfully many University campuses are refunding students who have returned home as a result of Covid-19, unfortunately the same cannot be said of some unscrupulous private providers.

“Many students left their private accommodation as soon as their campuses were shut down, some have loved ones here who need to be cared for and many of them lost their part-time jobs.

“Many students I know had held part time jobs in bars, hotels, and restaurants. The vast majority of these roles are gone as those services have closed due to the public health emergency. We need these students to be able to return to college once this crisis passes.

Also read: ‘We’ve shut our doors but we haven't turned our backs’, says Breda Greaves of Ballymahon's Convent Day Care Centre

“They are already at a huge financial disadvantage and now many private landlords are refusing to refund them their prepaid rents. It flies in the face of the sense of camaraderie we have seen elsewhere since the outbreak of this virus.

“I am urging accommodation providers to do the right thing here. Students have left their accommodation, unlikely to return this semester, the fair and decent thing to do is refund them,” concluded Deputy Flaherty.

Also read: ‘The measures that people take themselves will be important’, says Longford GP of Covid-19 fight

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