ÖH presents list of demands “Solidarity against inflation

22. August 2022
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10 demands for the protection of students and universities

In a press conference on Monday morning, the presidential team of the Austrian National Union of Students (ÖH) presented its list of demands “Solidarity against inflation”. The ÖH criticizes the current government aid for students as “far from sufficient” and therefore formulates effective measures in 10 demands to protect students and universities from the crisis. “Many students were already living below the poverty line before the inflation. Our list of demands is an urgent call for help so that students do not end up in even more precarious situations!”, Keya Baier from the chairmanship team appeals to the federal government. In addition, the universities must also be financially secured so that the quality of studies does not suffer from inflation: “The winter semester is just around the corner and we don’t know whether we will be sitting in cold lecture halls and whether there will be enough teaching staff. An aid package is also needed quickly for universities so that students have planning security!”

In the first part of the list of demands, the ÖH explicitly addresses the social situation of students and shows what improvements are needed here. Sara Velić from the chair team points out the urgency in this regard: “Even before the inflation, our student survey showed that a third of students have to live with financial worries. Urgent action is needed to ensure that inflation does not dramatically worsen this figure.” The ÖH is therefore calling for support in several areas, as Velić explains: “First of all, the student allowance must be significantly increased and the number of recipients expanded. So that we can afford to live, we demand a rent cap, an energy subsidy and the abolition of tuition fees. We also want rapid relief in the mobility sector with a free climate ticket for students.”

In part two of the catalog, the ÖH calls for an aid package for the universities so that students have planning security for the winter semester. Naima Gobara explains: “We students also want to be able to continue our studies as carefree as possible. To do this, universities must be kept open despite the massive impact inflation will have on their operations. Therefore, the additional costs of the universities must now be compensated by equalization payments and the electricity and heating costs must be covered by the government. For universities of applied sciences, we call for a valorization of student place funding; for universities, we call for a renegotiation of performance agreements.”

List of demands

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