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Jagmeet Singh told the Ryersonian his plan for student loans and grants
New Democratic Party Leader Jagmeet Singh told the Ryersonian today that his party promises to eliminate interest on student loans, to replace loans with grants and to increase access to grants.
“Students are having it really tough right now, particularly with the recent cuts brought up by Mr. Ford to OSAP. [That] has made it even harder for a lot of students to get access to their education,” Singh said.
The Ontario government led by Premier Doug Ford announced education cuts earlier this year. The cuts include cancelling free tuition for low-income students, tightening access to OSAP grants and cutting tuition fees by 10 per cent. The OSAP interest-free grace period after graduation was also cut.
“What I would do is immediately remove the interest off of federal loans to give students some relief. The second step is I would replace loans with grants, and increase access to grants,” Singh said. “Ultimately, what I want to do is see a future where there is no barriers between kindergarten and career… and that means free tuition.”
Singh also said that the Liberal government “has profited off of student debt to the tune of $3 billion.”
“Just to give you a contrast of choices, while profiting of $3 billion off students, Mr. Trudeau forgave $6 billion in corporate loans just last year alone. That to me is completely wrong,” the NDP leader said.
The Liberals platform promises an increase from Canada Student Grants for post-secondary students by up to $1,200 per year. The platform also promises that students would have a loan grace period of two years after graduation and would only start repaying their loans when they earn at least $35,000 annually.