On Saturday, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh presented the NDP’s plan to help young people thrive instead of being buried in debt. The NDP’s plan includes putting a moratorium on student loan payments, cancelling up to $20,000 per student of federal student loan debt and giving new graduates a five-year head start without having to repay any federal student loan. While Justin Trudeau had to be forced to help students throughout the pandemic, the NDP has a plan that puts young people first.
“Young people have been especially hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. They do not need thousands of dollars in student loan payments to add to this stress,” said MP Charlie Angus (Timmins-James Bay). “We are committed to supporting young people through this pandemic. Helping young people will help all of us by stimulating the economy and supporting a fair recovery.”
58 per cent of youth have experienced an impact on their financial situation due to the pandemic. And 61 per cent have faced difficulties with employment including fewer hours, job loss or absence of seasonal work. Our economy won’t bounce back if young people are held back having to pay hundreds of dollars in loan payments every month, with thousands of dollars going to the federal government just in interest.
“An education should help young people get ahead, not leave them further behind,” said Singh. “Since they have been in government, the Liberals have taken over $4 billion from students in interest payments – profiting off the backs of young people already feeling the squeeze. New Democrats are committed to a future where tuition is free and where no one needs to take on debt to get an education.”
The NDP reiterated its commitment to work with provinces and territories towards tuition-free post-secondary education and to re-instate the moratorium on student loan payments – cancelled in September by the Liberals – until the pandemic is over. Finally, the NDP will permanently remove interest on all federal student loans so the federal government stops profiting off the backs of young people.
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