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Occupation of Groningen Academy Building over

 

The occupation of the Academy Building of the University of Groningen ended Thursday night. The occupiers wanted to enforce more living space for students and have made new agreements about this. The protest by action group Shelter Our Students (S.O.S.) started yesterday afternoon with a ‘March of the Homeless’ through the city, after which dozens of students occupied (Dutch only) the hall of the Academy Building in Groningen.

 

S.O.S. then entered into consultation with the board of the university, the Hanzehogeschool and the municipality. The parties write in a joint statement that they have agreed that the current housing situation for international students is a social problem. "It is now finally black on white that this can no longer go on," says spokesperson Marinus Jongman of S.O.S.

 

There will be ‘strong lobbying’ in national politics to give municipalities and educational institutions more possibilities to better attune the influx of students to the capacity of education and the housing market. It has also been agreed that more emergency accommodation will be arranged in Groningen and that the price for it will be lowered.

S.O.S. calls the action a "severe means" and says that it was never the intention to block lectures. With the occupation, the action group also wanted to draw attention to the national housing shortage. A large ‘housing protest will be held in Amsterdam on Sunday.

 

HOP, Josefine van Enk