House Democrat Introduces Legislation to Forgive Student Loans for Frontline Healthcare Workers

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The Student Loan Forgiveness for Frontline Health Workers Act has been introduced by Representative Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) and cosigned by nine other House Democrats to forgive federal and private loans for all medical professionals on the front line of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Health care workers are worrying about their own health and how it will affect their families,” Maloney said in a statement. “They should not have to worry about their financial security after the crisis has passed.”

More than 500,000 people signed a MoveOn petition last month asking Congress to include student loan debt forgiveness for doctors in the next stimulus bill. And in a letter to Congress, the American Medical Association asked for student loan forgiveness “of at least $20,000 for residents and early graduated medical students whose debt averages over $200,000,” according to ABC.

The new legislation comes a couple of months after Representative Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) introduced a bill that would include widespread student loan forgiveness. However, that bill was capped at $30,000 and was applied only to public loans. Maloney’s legislation doesn’t have a cap.

The new legislation comes a week after Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer (D) announced a new program to provide a tuition-free college or technical education to essential workers who do not have a degree.

“The Futures for Frontliners program is our way of saying ‘thank you’ to those who have risked their lives on the front lines of this crisis. This program will ensure tuition-free college opportunities and give these dedicated Michiganders an opportunity to earn a technical certificate, associate degree or even a bachelor’s degree,” Whitmer said. “I want to assure all of our workers we will never forget those of you who stepped up and sacrificed their own health during this crisis. You’re the reason we’re going to get through this.”

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