Biden Administration Must Cancel Student Loan Debt to Advance Racial Equity

Charmaine Riley, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, [email protected]

36 civil rights organizations release principles outlining how the Biden-Harris administration  must advance equity and civil rights by cancelling student loan debt

WASHINGTON – To advance equity and civil rights, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, along with 35 civil rights and education organizations, today released Civil Rights Principles for Student Loan Debt Cancellation. The principles outline how to ensure that broad loan cancellation provides for equity and supports all student loan holders, especially women and Black and Latino individuals, who have been disproportionately impacted by the crushing debt of student loans. 

The groups urge the Biden-Harris administration to immediately cancel $50,000 of student loan debt per borrower: “As we navigate the concurrent crises of systemic racism, a global health pandemic, and the resulting economic recession, it is more important than ever that we take bold action that benefits everyone, especially communities of color,” they wrote. “Student debt cancellation will help Black and brown borrowers build wealth and enable our economy to move forward as millions of Americans are able to start families, buy homes, and set up small businesses.”

The principles state: 

  • Debt cancellation must extend to all student loan borrowers.
  • Debt cancellation must not be limited based on the sector of institution attended.
  • The debt cancellation process must be easy and accessible.
  • Debt cancellation must not have negative credit implications.
  • Debt cancellation should be paired with policies to increase meaningful access and affordability in our higher education system.

The Civil Rights Principles for Student Loan Debt Cancellation are available here

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights is a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 220 national organizations to promote and protect the rights of all persons in the United States. The Leadership Conference works toward an America as good as its ideals. For more information on The Leadership Conference and its member organizations, visit