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Press Release

NEA blasts Senate for denying student debt relief to millions of Americans ​​​​​​​

NEA President: ‘Americans deserve a Congress that will help them pursue their dreams—not squash them.’
The federal student loan forgiveness program for educators, fire fighters, nurses and other public service workers isn't working. Cancelling their student debt is the right answer, union members say.
Published: June 1, 2023

WASHINGTON — The Senate today narrowly voted to block congressional student debt relief in the Congressional Review Act. Invoking the CRA also threatens a promise owed to our nation’s public service employees through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. Since 2021, more than 615,000 educators and public service workers have received PSLF, equating to more than $42 billion in loan forgiveness. This CRA would unwind the pause on federal student loan payments and could even reinstate 157,000 loans forgiven through the PSLF program. Loan balances would rise with the addition of accumulated payments and interest, creating further economic hardship for borrowers and families already struggling to make ends meet.

The following statement can be attributed to NEA President Becky Pringle:

“The Biden administration’s Debt Relief Plan was designed to alleviate the overwhelming financial burden on millions of American students and their families. It also was a beacon of hope for students and working families across the country as they grappled with crippling student loan debt. President Biden’s plan represented a long-overdue opportunity to level the playing field and ensure that higher education remains accessible to all, regardless of economic background. But today, Congress decided to block this much-needed relief. Americans deserve a Congress that will help them pursue their dreams — not squash them. The President should rightly veto the resolution.”

Follow on Twitter at @NEAmedia and @BeckyPringle

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The National Education Association is the nation’s largest professional employee organization, representing more than 3 million elementary and secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators, students preparing to become teachers, healthcare workers, and public employees. Learn more at


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National Education Association

Great public schools for every student

The National Education Association (NEA), the nation's largest professional employee organization, is committed to advancing the cause of public education. NEA's 3 million members work at every level of education—from pre-school to university graduate programs. NEA has affiliate organizations in every state and in more than 14,000 communities across the United States.