Students in many provinces across Canada are working to eliminate interest on student loans. The Knock Out Interest campaign is being led by the British Columbia Federation of Students.
The British Columbia Federation of Students represents over 170,000 college and university students from across all regions of British Columbia. The Federation represents full- and part-time students at the college, undergraduate, and graduate levels. Together these students advocate for a well-funded system of post-secondary education that is affordable and accessible for all.
We’re launching this campaign because students in Canada are in a debt crisis.
Student debt in Canada has increased 78% since 1999. The total outstanding federal student loan debt is now $18.5 billion—and that number doesn’t even include debt from provincial student loans!
Because of ever-increasing tuition fees, students are graduating with debt loads that are higher than ever. Average student debt for an undergraduate degree in Canada is now over $30,000.
For students and families who have to borrow money in order to access post-secondary education, interest charged by the government adds thousands of dollars to the cost of their education.
For the average Canadian Student Loan, interest generates an additional $5,000 in costs!
This is for the same education as people who don’t need student loans. In effect, this interest is a tax on low- and middle-income students and families. The system unfairly punishes those who can’t afford to pay education costs up-front.
Charging interest on student loans isn’t just bad for individuals, it’s bad for the economy. A recent RBC study shows that student debt is holding recent graduates back in many important ways. Amongst recent graduates:
- 50% report not saving enough for emergencies
- 45% report delaying a home purchase
- 25% report that they are delaying having children
- 20% report that they are delaying marriage.
The solution is clear: we need to eliminate interest charged on student loans.
Eliminating interest on student loans will help to grow the economy by putting money back in the pockets of recent graduates as they join the workforce, which can then be spent on goods and services. It will also allow students and their families to focus less on their debt, and more on their careers and their lives.
It will help individuals, businesses, and the economy.
You can help make this happen!
Send an email right now to Prime Minister Trudeau urging him to eliminate interest on federal student loans.
Your quick action will go a long way.