The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) is inviting support from the academic community to join a sign-on letter from over 300 academics urging President Biden to use his executive authority to cancel student debt.
The letter from 52 initial signers and the sign-on form are available at https://forms.gle/nZxJsMYSyQkoA8yC7. The effort was led by Fred Wherry, Professor of Sociology at Princeton University, Laura Hamilton, Professor of Sociology at the University of California, and Charlie Eaton, Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of California.
The letter corrects some misperceptions that student debt cancellation would not be progressive: it details recent research and new data showing that cancellation would disproportionately help Black and low-income former students. The letter also notes that tax reform is a better tool than financial aid policy to claw back benefits from debt cancellation that may incidentally flow to some wealthier borrowers.
The letter was drafted in consultation with policy advocates who organized an important recent letter in support of debt cancellation from 329 civic organizations (including NASW and CSWE). Additionally, Sarah Christa Butts, Director of Public Policy at NASW is quoted in the associated press release.