New residence rules spark criticism

NEW REGULATIONS relating to the management of campus residences have been met with criticism by students. The document entitled ‘Managing Breaches of Residential Rules’ lays out a list of fines and punitive measures that will be taken against students believed to be in breach of residence rules.Speaking of complaints he has received from students, Students’ Union (SU) President, Aodhán Ó Deá reacted angrily to the regulations, questioning their legality and criticising what he describes as “extreme” fines and a flawed appeals system, as well as a lack of proper distribution of information about the new rules.[caption id="attachment_1070" align="alignnone" width="443" caption="Students living on campus residences must now abide by the new regulations. PHOTO: Eleni Henry"]Students living on campus residences must now abide by the new regulations. PHOTO: Eleni Henry[/caption]The new regulations were confirmed “in the second week of term and should have been circulated the next day, but this never happened”. Mr Ó’Deá added that he had heard “talk about [the rules] being circulated last Saturday, but that is far too late! Describing the implementation of the regulations as “an absolute mess”, Mr Ó’Deá argued that the university “cannot fine people with them not understanding why”.Perceiving numerous flaws with the regulations detailed in the document, Mr Ó Deá highlighted “a discrepancy between [an automatic fine of €100 for drinking in public] and the rules relating to drinking on the rest of campus.”Mr Ó Deá also expressed his apprehension about a lack a ‘maximum’ fine being set down in the regulations and criticised the given definition of a party, which is defined as ‘a gathering of eight or more people’. The fine for a breech of this rule is €100 at minimum. He commented that this was unjustifiable in an apartment housing six students, such as the Glenomena complex.The process for appealing fines, as set out in the document, was also questioned. Some students have been given a period of 24 hours notice of their appeal hearing. They are also required to pay a fee of €60, which is refundable if their appeal is successful.Mr Ó’Deá intends to argue that an overhaul of the regulations is necessary in a meeting today.The University Observer attempted to contact UCD Residential Services but not received comment at the time of going to print.