An open letter to the U.S. Congress

Cancel Student Debt

46 so far! Let’s get to 50 signers!

As your constituent, I strongly urge you to include student debt cancellation in the next COVID-19 Emergency Stimulus Bill. Student debt cancellation would provide immediate relief to Americans struggling with the economic fallout from COVID-19 and reduce the racial wealth gap by removing an unnecessary debt burden from Black families. Since the outbreak of COVID-19, 1 in 4 young people have lost work. The $1200 stimulus checks offered by the CARES Act were barely enough to cover a week or two of expenses (average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1060/month) and the temporary suspension on student loans only applied to some student borrowers. Given that one-third of Americans under age 30 have student loan debt, student debt cancellation could provide direct, immediate relief to a large number of  young people struggling with the economic fallout from COVID-19, and contribute to the long-term financial health of American families. Student debt has been shown to reinforce the racial wealth gap. Black families rely more heavily on student debt than white families, Black students graduate with an average of $7,400 more in student debt than their white peers, and Black student borrowers default on loans at a rate 5 times that of white borrowers. Student debt cancellation would be a direct way to address structural and institutional racism by removing an additional debt burden that hinders Black American progress.  Finally, student debt has been projected to boost GDP up to $108 billion a year and add up to 1.5 million jobs per year. Cancelling student debt would free up dollars for 45 million Americans, enabling them to inject money back into the economy and invest in long-term financial goals. As a young person, I strongly urge you and your colleagues to include student debt cancellation in the next COVID-19 Stimulus Bill. Now more than ever we must take steps to support our fragile economy, and move toward a more just and equitable society. Please cancel student debt!

First sent on September 8, 2020 by Robert Stoffel

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