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Forty-five million Americans are burdened with a collective $1.7 trillion in student loan debt.
Democrats have the power to cancel all student debt right now through budget reconciliation, without the support of a single Republican.

But they won’t without pressure from us.

Send a quick email to your senators and representative urging them to cancel student debt now. It can’t wait a moment longer.

RSVP here to join RootsAction tomorrow, Thursday, Feb. 25 at 8 pm ET / 5 pm PT for a special event with Nina Turner. We’ll hear from her about why we need to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour and then we’ll take action by contacting our senators, representatives and the White House!

5 Reasons Student Debt Must be Canceled NOW:

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1. Canceling student debt would provide much-needed relief for millions. Temporary student loan forbearance, passed by Congress in response to the pandemic, is only a short-term bandaid on a much larger problem. Canceling student debt fully would relieve 45 million Americans who are burdened with debt during this turbulent time.

2. Boost the economy. Eliminating student debt could bolster the economy by generating more than a trillion dollars over ten years and creating up to 1.5 million jobs each year, according to an analysis by the Levy Institute.

3. Improving racial equity. Black and Latino borrowers are more likely than their white counterparts to default on their student loan payments, and are less likely to finish their degree. Black students graduate with higher debt, and due to income disparities, take longer to pay off the loans and end up paying more interest. Twenty years after beginning college, the average Black borrower still owes 95% of their original debt while white counterparts owe only 6%.

4. Student debt burdens Americans of all ages. Around 20% of all student loan debt is owed by borrowers over the age of 50 and the debt total is ballooning -- in 2004 it totaled $47 billion growing to $289.5 billion by 2019. Thousands of senior borrowers have had their Social Security benefits partially seized to repay defaulted federal loans. And the burden of student debt has become intergenerational, as older Americans take out loans on behalf of, or co-sign loans for their children and grandchildren, while grappling with their own debt.

5. It is much more difficult to discharge student loan debt in bankruptcy, than other forms of debt, so many don’t even try. Student loan debt, unlike credit card and medical debt, is treated differently in bankruptcy, in that vaguely defined “undue hardship” must be proven by the borrower through a formal legal proceeding, in order for the debt to be discharged. And while federal student loans are forgiven upon death, private loans are not necessarily.

Join us in telling Congress to cancel student debt NOW. Send a quick message to your senators and representative and share this with everyone you know who would benefit from this!

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-- The RootsAction.org Team

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>> John Waggoner, AARP: “Student Loan Debt is an Unheralded Burden for Older Borrowers.”
>> Fullwiler, Kelton, Ruetschlin, & Steinbaum, Levy Economics Institute: “The Macroeconomic Effects of Student Debt Cancellation.”
>> Sullivan, Meschede, Shapiro, & Escobar, IASP Institute on Assets and Social Policy: “Stalling Dreams, how student debt is disrupting life changes and widening the racial wealth gap.”


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