Campaign aims to free black women from the burden of student debt

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – Black women have more student loan debt than any other group, and a national petition has been launched to write off $ 50,000 in student debt for each borrower.

Supporters say it would help build a better future for black women.

More than 28,000 people have already signed the petition asking the Biden administration to write off the debt, which advocates say would help close the racial wealth gap of at least 20%.

Shakya Cherry-Donaldson, executive director of the nonprofit 1000 Women Strong, said there was not enough focus on solutions to free black women from the ever-increasing burden of debt.

“We know that a black woman who obtains a bachelor’s degree is paid the same as a white man who has a high school diploma; a black woman who has a master’s degree is paid the same as a white man. with a bachelor’s degree, ”Cherry said. -Donaldson describes. “We cannot catch up, even with education and experience on our side.”

Data from the US Department of Education shows significant race-based differences in the amount of debt that students of color bear and can easily pay. The goals of the campaign and petition are to empower black women and close the gap from current trends.

Studies show that African American families are more likely to borrow than White, Latino or Asian families, and black women are often the primary breadwinners.

Cherry-Donaldson stressed that they are looking for opportunities to build wealth.

“For our current families, but also to invest in things like real estate, real estate, starting our own businesses, all of which require capital or some type of loan process,” Cherry-Donaldson explained. “We are completely excluded because we carry the burden of student debt.”

She added that the group hopes to find an ally in Kamala Harris, given her experience as the first woman, first black woman and first vice president of Asian descent.

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