DCU student claims on-campus accommodation is ‘illegal’

Claims that Larkfield on campus accommodation is illegal or sub standard have been slammed by DCU Students’ Union President, Paul Doherty.

Speaking to the College View, Doherty said: “I have great confidence in the University, they would know if it was illegal.”

DCU student Declan McCool, at a Class Representative Council meeting, claimed that the accommodation constitutes as illegal bedsits under The Amended Housing Standards Act 2009.

McCool argued that the size of the accommodation in Larkfield qualified as a bedsit or accommodation that is sub-standard.

Speaking to the College View, he said Larkfield should “be to the standard of the rental market outside campus.”

McCool said that while there may be no legal obligation to change the accommodation, it is a moral issue.

He believes that off campus facilities have to upgrade and improve the service they offer students and the same standards should be in place for the first years who live in Larkfield.

He said: “If you don’t want to upgrade the accommodation, why force students to live in sub-standard accommodation.”

However Doherty disputed McCool’s argument saying: “I asked him for a definition of a bedsit and what I was given definitely was not a good description of Larkfield.”

The Amended Housing Standards Act was brought into effect in 2009, with a four year phasing-in period to allow landlords to bring accommodation up to standard. As of 2013 the act is now in full legal effect.

When contacted by The College View Sarah Emerson, the operations manager of Campus Residence Ltd said: “We are compliant with the legislation”.

Following on from the claims, Doherty said DCU are considering re-doing Larkfield accommodation to “increase the number of students living on campus.”

Gill Fitzsimons and Sean Defoe

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