Inflation: students feel abandoned in the face of rising cost of living

Chelsey-Lynn Rousselle is studying Political Science with a minor in Francophonie Studies, and also acts as Advocacy Commissioner for the University of Ottawa student union.

Originally from New Brunswick, they chose Ontario for their studies. A choice more and more difficult to assume because of the costs related to his education. In May, the student union campaigned against rising tuition fees, but the University administration, due to inflation, still decided to raise fees for out-of-province students. and international. We are already disproportionately affected by these increases in the cost of living, in generalhe laments.

For its part, the administration of the University of Ottawa affirms to be aware of the financial pressures undergone by the students. The University has the most generous scholarship program in Ontario to support students in their studies.

Chelsey-Lynn Rousselle has been attending the University of Ottawa for five years.

Photo: Chelsey-Lynn Rousselle

Choosing between buying a textbook or food and shelter

Chelsey-Lynn Rousselle explains that the price of housing is a source of concern for them, so much so that they are forced to move soon. My roommates and I are forced to move to the heart of Gatineau in the fall because it’s too expensive to live in Ottawashe explains.

We have to live so far from campus that it takes us more than an hour by public transport to get to the University or we have the choice of packing like sardines with five to seven students in unhealthy apartments to afford to live »

A quote from Chelsey-Lynn Rousselle, student

Although she lives with her parents, Galiba Abdullayeva also observes similar concerns among her peers about rent in Toronto. My friends not only have to pay for their rent, they have to pay for their groceries. I saw [l’impact] on their mental healthshe says.

According to real estate agent Thomas Delespierre, inflation and the start of the academic year are currently having an impact on the rise in rental market prices. All students looking for accommodation are therefore in competition with normal tenants who are there all year round.he explains. On top of that, we have had successive increases in the interest rate; so many buyers preferred to rent for a year or two, he continues. A situation which, according to him, will continue while putting pressure on the real estate market.

With the coming immigration, we expect to have 150,000, 200,000 new people in Ontario. We are not building fast enough to absorb all this demand so it is difficult to see how prices could go down. »

A quote from Thomas Delespierre, real estate agent

For the student in 2e year in the Psychology program at York University, Galiba Abdullayeva, it is especially at the level of the price of school supplies that the shoe pinches. She explains that last year, the purchase of books was within her reach, which is no longer the case today. I saw that there was a big price increaseshe explains.

She says she has to spend many hours looking for better prices and using coupons. [Auparavant, j’allais] on Amazon and in five minutes, I bought my papers, my pencils, my manuals. Now I have to go to different websites.

The young woman explains that she constantly has to think about her expenses instead of being able to fully concentrate on her studies.

Similarly, Chelsey-Lynn Rousselle claims to have to make difficult choices and rely on student community solidarity to achieve her goals: We have reached the point where we have to prioritize what to buy. We are obliged to share a book between five students without however being able to underline or use the manual as we would like.

We look at our list of costs. We say to ourselves: I have to eat, pay my rent, my internet so I’m not going to buy my course books. And then our grades suffer as a result. »

A quote from Chelsey-Lynn Rousselle, student

Despite two full-time jobs this summer, it’s not uncommon for Mx Rousselle to help herself to the University’s union food bank. I don’t eat very well. The stereotypes of KraftDinner student is the present. It also affects our healthhe said.

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