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Occupy Student Debt National Campaign Launch

Occupy Student Debt! National Campaign Launch

On Monday, November 21, Occupy Student Debt is launching a national campaign of student debt refusal. This campaign is a response to the student debt crisis and the dependency of U.S. higher education on debt-financing from the people it is supposed to serve. There is no justice in a system that openly invites profiteering on the part of lenders. Education is a right and a public good, and it should be properly funded as such.

The campaign will consist of three pledges:

— A debtor's pledge to refuse loan payments.The pledge will take effect after a million debtors have signed.

— A faculty pledge of support for the refusers.

— A non-debtors' pledge of support for parents and other public sympathizers.

The pledges come out of our commitment to four fundamental principles:

— Education is not a consumer good and therefore student loans should not be treated like consumer loans. If they are to exist, student loans should be interest-free.

— Tuition at all public colleges and universities should be federally funded.

— Private and for-profit colleges and universities should open their books.

— The current debt burden should be written off, ending the bondage of two generations of student debtors.

The launch will take place 1:30 at Zuccotti Park, followed by CUNY/Baruch at Madison Square Park at 3pm. Given the strength of national sentiment around this issue, we expect campuses around the country will join us in staging events to launch the campaign.

The campaign is the work of the student debt subcommittee of the OWS Empowerment and Education working group.

The pledges are on this website: