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Jul 23 16 6:35 PM

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Independent.co.uk

UK

Students turn to sex work and gambling to

make ends meet

by

Oscar Quine

Wednesday July 20th 2016


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A signi􀃒cant number of British students are turning to sex work and gambling, according to a

new study which found that the average student faces a personal 􀃒nance shortfall of £250 a

month.

The National Student Money Survey 2016 found that living costs stand at a national average

of £790, while maintenance loans equate to roughly £540. In a bid to balance the books,

students are taking drastic measures, such as commuting hundreds of miles from their

family homes to avoid paying rent or accepting payments to complete others’ essays.

One in 10 of the 2,217 students surveyed said they had turned to gambling or prostitution to

help pay their tuition fees and living costs.

One student, who asked to remain anonymous, said she had supplemented her income with

escort work and prostitution – adding that this had sometimes put her in danger.

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‘Put myself at risk’

“I’ve slept with people for money and I’ve been on dates with disgusting guys and put myself

at risk just so I could have dinner and some left-overs for the next day,” she said.

While 79 per cent of students said their parents were their 􀃒rst port of call when times were

tight, a third complained that they did not o􀃗er enough 􀃒nancial support. One in 􀃒ve

respondents said that they worried about making ends meet – however, a quarter admitted

that they had never budgeted.

Forty-four per cent of students said they relied in part on savings and investments to pay

their way, however, low interest rates mean they now provide less income.

Max, a student based in London, reported to supplementing the £20 he earned annually

from dividends and interest with a lucrative gambling career.

A third student, who gave her name as Jenny, said she made £100 a month selling her

underwear online.

A grim picture

“I get about £3,300 in a maintenance loan, and my rent for the year is about £4,500, so it

doesn’t even cover that let alone bills, food, transport and uni supplies,” she said.

One EU student reported making £15,000 a year writing essays and dissertations for other

students.

The survey, conducted every year by the website Save the Student, paints a grim picture of

students’ expectations. Only 48 per cent of respondents said they felt con􀃒dent of 􀃒nding

work when they graduated, while 55 per cent did not believe university was worth the money.

Save the Student’s Editor-in-Chief, Owen Burek, labelled the survey’s 􀃒ndings “unfair” and

called on the new Prime Minister, Theresa May, to review the student 􀃒nance system.

"I would no more be a Master than a slave. It does not conform to my idea of Democracy." Abraham Lincoln 1856.

Last Edited By: UncleLewis Jul 23 16 6:40 PM. Edited 1 time