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Student Accommodation

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 3 November 2020

Tuesday, 3 November 2020

Ceisteanna (605)

Rose Conway-Walsh

Ceist:

605. Deputy Rose Conway-Walsh asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage if he has met with the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science on the subject of refunds for third-level students for unused accommodation; the actions the Government plans to take to ensure students received refunds from private accommodation providers; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32908/20]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Housing)

I recently wrote to, and also discussed this matter with, the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science and I understand that his Department is working with representatives from the higher education sector to address the challenges faced by students during this difficult time. The Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science understands, based on the information available to it, that a number of universities have confirmed that students who do not wish to proceed with their accommodation booking can cancel it without charge. Others have confirmed that students will be refunded on a pro-rata basis for the weeks that they are not availing of accommodation.

Both Minister Harris and I, and our respective Departments urge private accommodation providers to be flexible in finding solutions, given the circumstances in which students find themselves. However, it is not within the remit of the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science nor of my Department to direct any accommodation provider to refund rents paid.

Question No. 606 answered with Question No. 563.
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