The Cost of Living Big Plan team are putting together a project to:
- Increase access to free outdoor equipment
- Continue to challenge the cost of sport
- Challenge the cost of student accommodation
- Challenge the current laundry contract
This team have already seen a few wins:
- The team have reached an agreement with the University for the removal of the £20 Essex Blades Pass for the coming year, saving £20 per Essex Blades member.
- When it comes to accommodation they are planning to do an audit of the university, and have gained a seat at the table when the University is discussing changes in rent prices/contracts.
- And, the team have conducted research on laundry costs at 10 other Universities that use Circuit Laundry as their provider, and members of the SU have met with the University who have agreed that we will be part of the negotiating team for the renewal of the laundry contract.
But this is just the start, and student feedback is essential for this process. Because of this, the Big Plan Cost of Living team are in the spotlight for the third Big Splash event of the term, taking a stand in the Hex laundrette, talking to students about their experiences.
The main purpose of this event was to collect student feedback so the team can use this as a focus when it comes to the contract renewal for the laundry services, which the team are sitting in on.
They will also be using this feedback on Thursday the 24th of October at Circuit’s awareness day, which all students are all invited to. The event is on from 10 am – 4 pm, and it’s a chance for people to ask questions and feedback to the company that run all the laundrettes on campus.
The Cost of Living splash event in the Hex Laundrette gathered a lot of feedback and response from students. Most of these were freshers, but they also had a chance to talk to returning students who still live on campus too.
They managed to talk to around 50 students on the day, gathering quotes from 36 students that they will use to feedback to Circuit and to the contract renewal board.
One student commented that it is “very expensive to wash my clothes”.
Another said that the “dryers also don’t dry very well and sometimes have to buy use twice.”
And one student pointed out that, “washing machines are faulty and spin functions are not working.”
All three of these points were brought up more than once, and it’s also been pointed out that there’s a problem with the card machines in the laundrette, and for certain degree subjects, washing is an essential service that they need to use regularly, so it can be frustrating when it doesn’t work.
“Nursing students have to wash their uniform several times a week whilst on placement. It is too expensive.”
This is just the start for the cost of living team when it comes to figuring out the problems with the laundry services on campus.
They are planning to hold another event soon, to give students a chance to provide more feedback, so keep an eye out for that if you want to get involved.
If you want to follow the progress of the Cost of Living team, want to get involved or see what other projects the SU are working on this year. You can do so here.