$6 Billion Student Debt Forgiveness Approved for Public Service Workers

Another round of nearly $6 billion in student debt forgiveness has been approved for 77,000 public service workers.

$6b Loan Forgiveness

President Biden has announced that nearly $6 billion in student loan debt would be canceled for 77,000 Americans who work in public services. The newest round of debt forgiveness came under the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, created in 2007 to help ease the debt burden for graduates working full-time in government and non-profits. 

Among those 77,000 are teachers, nurses, and firefighters, who on average will have $77,000 each in debt canceled.

“These public service workers have dedicated their careers to serving their communities, but because of past administrative failures, never got the relief they were entitled to under the law,” the president announced in a public statement.

His comments were likely a reference to the previous Trump administration. Though the program went into effect in 2017, former President Trump’s office rejected most relief applicants.

Appealing to the Youth

This recent announcement is the next in several steps Biden has taken to appeal to younger voters as the presidential elections loom ever closer. Millions of Gen Z and Millennial U.S. voters are beginning to lose faith in Biden and his administration, particularly due to continued support of Israel’s presence in Gaza.

As such, student debt forgiveness has become a major campaign point for Biden, in the hopes that it will bring young Democrat voters to the polling booths come November.

43 Million Americans Affected

Student loan debt affects around 43 million Americans, with younger generations shouldering the vast majority of debt. As of June 2023, outstanding student loans totaled $1.63 trillion, according to the Federal Student Aid Office of the U.S. Department of Education. 

Through President Biden’s and his administration’s efforts, $144 billion in student loans have been canceled since 2020, affecting nearly 4 million Americans. 

Struck Down by Supreme Court 

Though his $430 billion student debt relief program was struck down by the Supreme Court last year, this recent announcement suggests that Biden has still committed himself to easing massive student debt which has tripled since the 2008 financial crisis. 

“Through all of our various student debt relief actions, nearly four million Americans have had their student debt canceled under my administration,” Biden continued in his statement.

“And, in the wake of the supreme court’s decision on my administration’s original student debt relief plan, we are continuing to pursue an alternative path to deliver student debt relief to as many borrowers as possible as quickly as possible.”

Build an Economy From the Bottom Up

“I won’t back down from using every tool at my disposal to deliver student debt relief to more Americans and build an economy from the middle out and bottom up,” he concluded. Crippling loan interest is one of the major drivers of financial insecurity for younger Americans, affecting their credit scores and making it more difficult to secure mortgages and invest their money. 

“Today, more than 100 times more borrowers are eligible for PSLF than there were at the beginning of the administration,” said Education Secretary Miguel Cardona on Thursday. “The Biden administration is turning a promise broken under our predecessor into a promise kept,” he continued. 

All public service workers eligible for the next round of debt relief should receive an official email signed off by the President this week. “Because you’ve pursued a career in public service, you’re on track to get your eligible student loans forgiven in less than a year through Public Service Loan Forgiveness,” it will read. 

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