SIPTU members have been encouraged to support a protest rally by students seeking to stop rent increases in student accommodation at University College Dublin, which is taking place at 12.00 noon today (Wednesday, 4th March) on the campus. SIPTU Public Administration and Community Division Organiser, Adrian Kane, said: “We are encouraging members of SIPTU to support the protest rally against proposed rent increases.“Students across the country are campaigning to stop unjustifiable proposed rent increases for student accommodation. Workers and students must stand side-by-side to ensure that we all have access to the most basic of human rights, the right to shelter.“It is not acceptable for universities to mimic the kind of profiteering that is clearly taking part in elements of the rental property market. Students are essentially being asked to pay for the chronic under funding crisis in the third level sector including with unjustifiable hikes in the cost of student accommodation. The incoming Government will have multiple problems to deal with but at the heart of all the crises – in housing, health, childcare and public transport – is a chronic investment deficit in the public sector.”He added: “SIPTU UCD Section Committee passed a motion last week supporting the Students Union in their campaign. Members can show their support by signing the Students Union petition online or to come during their break and join the rally.”