In a statement Wednesday, President Joe Biden announced his administration will extend the date that borrowers are free from repaying federal student loans to May 1, 2022.
The repayment pause was initially set to end Jan, 31, 2022.
Biden has received pressure from advocates and elected officials about restarting payments amid the pandemic.
In a joint written statement, Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, Senator Elizabeth Warren, and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Shumer said:
“We’re pleased the Biden administration has heeded our call to extend the pause on student loan payments. As we stated in our December 8th letter, the pause on federal student loan payments, interest, and collections has improved borrowers’ economic security, allowing them to invest in their families, save for emergencies, and pay down other debt.”
The trio has also been calling for President Biden to take executive action to cancel $50,000 in student debt, a figure that would help close the racial wealth gap given that Black Millennials owe a median of $44,000.
On Biden’s presidential campaign trail, he promised his administration would cancel $10,000 in student debt, but he has yet to action for this widespread loan forgiveness.
In a survey of over 33,000 borrowers by the Student Debt Crisis Center, 89% say they’re not financially secure enough to begin making payments after Feb 1.
Over 200 organizations called for the pause to be extended earlier this month, stating that:
tens of millions of student loan borrowers are slated to be thrown back into repayment on federal student loans they are ill-equipped to pay as the deadly Covid-19 pandemic continues to devastate Americans’ health and financial security…payments should not resume until your administration has fully delivered on the promises you made to student loan borrowers to fix the broken student loan system and cancel federal student debt.