TESTIMONIALS. "I don’t have four minimum wages to put towards rent" : students’ struggle to find accommodation in Paris before the Games

On social networks, calls for help are increasing, with messages coming from young interns who are looking for short-term accommodation in Paris. A real headache, which intensifies with the approach of the Paris Games. Some therefore have to make do, like Gwendoline, who waits like every day for her train at Saint-Lazare station in Paris to return to Rouen. This computer science student started her internship three weeks ago, but she has not found accommodation.

II have a friend who puts me up in Rouen so I can take the train every day.”, she explains. Except that his journey lasts “1h48, in the morning, and in the evening”. A situation that has become “unlivable” for the young woman. “I can’t do anything with my days except come and go”she laments.

Doing nothing with his days, except continuing to scan real estate ads on the train. “I’m looking at the accommodations that appeared during the day. But even if I send emails, I get very few responses, so I’m getting a little discouraged, because I tell myself that I will never find it before the Olympics”worries Gwendoline.

In front of a real estate agency in Paris, Damien scans the ads. He is a student in Toulouse and his internship begins in two and a half weeks. “I contacted agencies who simply told me: ‘there, at the moment, it’s a struggle, see in September’. But I can’t, I don’t have four minimum wages to put into a rent.”

Many poor interns therefore rely on student associations and unions. Like Salomé Hocquard, deputy general delegate of Unef. “It’s absolutely not normal that we’re struggling,” she regrets, especially since “more and more training courses make internship compulsory”. Salomé and her union try to give advice to these young people: “What we try to tell students, quite honestly, is that in the summer you will have to find an internship somewhere other than Paris, because it will be very complicated to find accommodation.”

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  • Source of information and images “svoboda

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