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18th Jul 2018
A local councillor in York has labelled students 'house snatchers' and has vowed to oppose the 'studentification' of the local area.
Mark Walters, an independent Osbaldwick councillor, has distributed a leaflet arguing that the current acceptability threshold for student houses in the community, which is 20%, is too high.
Warters told local paper York Vision: "My position regarding student housing provision in residential areas is the same as it has been for many years, namely that the University authorities should face up to their responsibilities to provide an adequate level of on-campus accommodation."
He added that the current situation is "not wanted by residents in Osbaldwick, not wanted by Osbaldwick Parish Council and not wanted by me as Ward Councillor." Warters coined the phrase 'invasion of the house snatchers' a few years ago when writing a press article against the number of student-let HMOs in York.
However, students have hit out against such claims, arguing he should represent everyone. Costas Mourselas, a second year PPE student, said: "Councillor Walters is appealing to irrational and conservative fears and attitudes that have no place in a modern society, let alone in the city council chamber."
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