Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU) President László Molnárfi today submitted a letter to Provost Linda Doyle calling for a two-year rent freeze on College accommodation.
The letter has garnered 591 signatures since Wednesday, including that of previous TCDSU President Gabi Fullam. 85% of those who have signed the open letter consented to having their name included on the final letter.
The letter contained an ultimatum to College to commit to a two-year rent freeze on all University-owned accommodation by October 11 or face “further disruptive action” similar to the recent blockade of the Book of Kells and Long Room.
Initially coming in response to College’s decision to increase rents by the maximum legal limit of 2%, it said: “You ignored our pleas, and rents were raised by the maximum legal limit in June 2023. In response, students launched a mass campaign of resistance in September 2023 asking for a 2-year rent freeze on all university-owned accommodation; a campaign that escalated to a day-long blockade of the Book of Kells”.
“Rents have increased by at least 25% since 2015, and can be as much as € 12,000 per year, a price 93% of students find unaffordable according to a recent survey. These increases are actively pricing students out of education.”
College previously defended the 2% rent increase as “modest”, citing “high inflation” as the reasoning behind increasing license fees to cover rising costs.
This is despite the fact that College’s financial statements show it made €10.64m in revenue from College accommodation in 2022, and all College accommodation units exceed the average rent for a room in Dublin city centre of €802 per month.