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Keen to find out if you’re eligible for this compensation? Scroll down to find out…
Since elected, Volt has tried to put the needs of both national and international students on the political agenda of Maastricht’s municipal council. For example, together with a few other parties, Volt put forth a petition calling upon the national government of the Netherlands to provide financial assistance to all students in need of help due to the energy crisis that afflicts us all. And, by “all”, we mean: no matter what your nationality is! In the meantime this petition has gotten over 2600 signatures and has been sent to the nation’s political capital for discussion.
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Next to this, Volt has frequently discussed this matter with Maastricht’s executive board, as well as coalition and opposition parties. In these conversations, Volt has always advocated for the needs of Maastricht’s diverse student population. Compared to other cities, Maastricht’s student population is quite unique. It makes up a large chunk of the population of this city, and its backgrounds differentiate a lot. In fact, more than half of Maastricht University’s students are non-Dutch!
Other than making sure that students would be compensated, there were 2 main priorities for Volt we wanted to achieve. Firstly, we wanted to make sure that students would be eligible regardless of the type of their education: whether you study at UM, Zuyd, Management School or any of the practically oriented programs. Secondly, we wanted to make sure that students in need would be eligible regardless of their nationality.
Following yesterday’s municipal council meeting, we finally have some clarity on the matter. First of all, there will be a national fund of 1.6 million euros. Contrary to most cities in the Netherlands, Maastricht will make these funds available for everyone in the city, regardless of nationality.
That being said, there are still some limiting criteria, which we list below:
👉 You are at least 21 years old
👉 You’re a student, regardless of your nationality (EU & non-EU included)
👉 Students of all educational institutes (MBO, HBO & University) are eligible
👉 Your household must have their own energy-contract
👉 In case you live together with multiple students, the amount will have to be split amongst the tenants
👉 You are living, and registered, in Maastricht for at least 6 months
👉 Your income does not exceed 120% of minimum wage
👉Do note that all Dutch students loans are taken into consideration. Unfortunately, this includes student loans you are currently not taking but could take out
You may wonder, what is included?
👉 A one-off compensation of up to 1300 euros
👉 This can be applied retroactively, covering potential energy costs made since October 2022
👉 The local government aims to open registration as of the end of January
So what do you do in case you’re not eligible? Currently, the municipality is working hard to ensure that part of the local emergency funds can also be made available to students in need. Our goal would be to also ensure that this allocation (estimated at 1 million euros) would also be open to all students, regardless of educational background or nationality. Volt calls upon the local government to also take into consideration the needs of students aged 18 - 21, who are not eligible for any compensation currently.
We finally have some clarity on the financial situation! However, we are very much aware that this could come with quite some bureaucratic complexity. In short, how does an individual know if they’re eligible for financial support?
To help you, Volt will start their weekly office hours at the Brusselsestraat 53B. We will be available every Friday from 10.00 - 18.00 as of January 20th. During these office hours we are happy to help you with either your application or any questions you might have surrounding the situation. In the meantime, you are also free to email our party leader: firstname.lastname@example.org.
✊We want to thank Executive Councillor (Wethouder) Alex Meij particularly for making this new package legally possible!