In a letter to President Biden, the SBPC and over 200 organizations representing millions of students, workers, people of color, veterans, people with disabilities, and people of faith, call on the administration to extend the pause on student loan payments scheduled to resume for millions of borrowers on January 31, 2022. Advocates warn that resuming payments will throw borrowers back into a system plagued by breakdowns, corruption, and abuse, where people were often left paying debts they did not owe or should no longer be paying. In light of the current economic instability, a rush to repayment without meaningful action to address the student debt crisis will undermine promises by the President to fix the student loan system and build back better.
The letter highlights how the payment pause is serving as a lifeline for millions of borrowers and their families lives, enabling them to make ends meet each month and weather the economic crisis caused by COVID-19. While the administration’s decisions to extend the payment pause through 2020 and make progress on delivering debt relief through steps such as the overhaul of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program and delivering relief to borrowers who have a total and permanent disability are critical and welcome steps, the abysmal track record of the student loan industry responsible for managing the transition to repayment, combined with upcoming loan transfers for millions of borrowers, could be disastrous for borrowers. It’s critical the Department of Education continue to undertake significant structural reforms and provide real, immediate relief, including student debt cancellation, before resuming payments.
Read the Letter: Organizations Urge President Biden to Delay Restarting Student Loan Payments
Read the Press Release: Advocates Urge President Biden to Delay Restarting Student Loan Payments Given New Omicron Variant, Economic Uncertainty, and Ongoing System Failures