July 23, 2021 | WASHINGTON, DC — Today, the U.S. Department of Education launched a public inquiry into the broken Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program.
In response, SBPC Executive Director Seth Frotman released the following statement:
“Today’s action by the Department of Education offers hope for public service workers who have been let down and cheated out of promised debt forgiveness. For the first time, the federal government is asking those who depend on the program to help decide what comes next. America’s public service workers must take this opportunity to tell President Biden and Secretary Cardona that PSLF is broken and that only sweeping action to deliver debt relief can right a decade of wrongs by the Department of Education and the student loan industry. Public service workers have done their part — now it is time for the Biden Administration to keep the promise of PSLF.”
The Public Service Loan Forgiveness program was created in 2007 to provide relief to public service workers with student loan debt in exchange for a decade of service in their communities or to our country.
Unfortunately, since its inception, the program has been mishandled and undermined by the Department of Education and the student loan industry. As a result, the program now has a 98 percent rejection rate—and the expansion meant to fix it has a 97 percent denial rate. Underlying these statistics, millions of public service workers have been cheated out of their right to loan forgiveness guaranteed under federal law.
A broad coalition of stakeholders including veterans service organizations, legislators, consumer advocates, and labor organizations representing millions of public service workers have all called on the Biden administration to restore the promise of PSLF.