By Louise Meek
Ninety percent of a Student Loan will go on rent for many students across London. Eighty-five percent of a Student Loan will go on student rent for many student across the rest of the UK. University Halls and private landlords deem that “affordable” pricing for rent is between £146 to £300. Students across the UK are having no other options but to pay these extortionate amounts of their loans or go elsewhere for university. Higher Rents are driving social cleansing of education, pushing working class students into working more hours, to cover costs.
This isn’t just damaging their work at university, but damaging their own mental health. I went over to a rent strike workshop weekend, which brought together over 40 working class students of the left sharing their experiences of being on a rent strike. After the success of the weekend, a few activists including myself, where asked to be on a Student Accommodation panel, we would judge the best applicants based on the accommodation including the rent prices. As a collective we decided to abstain our vote on the basis that these high prices are pushing working class students further away from higher education, making more profits for landlord elites.