COVID-19 Watch News

UPLB dorms’ sudden storage fee guidelines confuse students

Photo credits to University Housing Office (UHO) website

UPLB dormers aired their frustrations on the confusing guidelines set by the Office of Student Housing (OSH) regarding the storage fee for the belongings left in UP dorms due to the pandemic.

Last July 27, OSH announced through the UPLB Alliance of Dormitory Associations (ADA) that UP dormers should get their belongings before August 1 or else they would pay a storage fee of P200 monthly during semestral break and P300 monthly in the start of the first sem.

The dormers raised that they would experience difficulties in traveling to pick up their things due to a lack of transportation and financial incapabilities.

“Ate sana po mapaabot po sa mga nasa office na hindi po lahat ay may means to travel and pick up their belongings lalo na kung sobrang malalayo ang panggagalingan,” Faye Cahapay, a resident of Women’s Residence Hall told her dorm officer.

Since most of the belongings left in UP dorms are still inside the rooms, OSH advised the dormers to write an authorization letter for staff to pack their things in storage rooms.

However, some dormers disagreed with letting other people pack their things due to personal reasons. 

The OSH then stated the belongings that would stay in the dormer’s room would be considered to a transient fee that is P150 per day or P4,500 per month.

The Residence Hall Agreement (RHA) that was signed by the UP dormers cited that no belonging shall be left inside the room or locker by the students going on semestral and summer vacation.

“I just hope na they (the administration) would be more considerate kasi we are in a pandemic. Sa halip na ‘yung panggastos for food and necessities na lang ang iintindihin, may online classes/remote learning pa na paparating tapos may fees pa pala such as this na need isipin,” Katherine Ericka Cornejo from Men’s Residence Hall stated.

Meanwhile, Shaira, a UP dormer who requested not to be named, said that a point person on her dorm could only accommodate seven to nine persons every week, citing the impossibility of finishing it earlier to avoid paying for fees.

“Since nakikisuyo lang naman sa mga natitirang dormers, wala naman kaming magagawa doon kasi sila ‘yung nahihirapan sa packing,” she added.

The UP dormers then call out the OSH to give clarifications with the guidelines and to consider the financial struggles of the students.

With that, the UPLB ADA sent a letter to OSH for recommendations in asking the Chancellor to grant waiving of dorm and storage fees and the RHA, and extension of stay of the dormers. 

“We are sincerely doing our best to gather all of your concerns and raise them to the administration,” UPLB ADA assured the UP dormers.

The Perspective tried to reach out to the OSH for clarifications but the latter said that they are currently resolving the issues and concerns as of writing. [P]

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