Fifteen former Corinthian Colleges students announce refusal of loan repayment as part of new anti-debt campaign
The debt forgiveness movement born out of Occupy Wall Street has entered a new stage in its activism around student loans. On Monday a wing of the campaign known as Debt Collective announced a “debt strike” by 15 former students of the for-profit college chain Corinthian Colleges Inc.
The former students have said they will not repay any more of their student loans, in protest of what they describe as predatory lending practices on the part of Corinthian Colleges and the U.S. Department of Education (DOE). Organizers working with Debt Collective said the coordinated action was a test run for larger debt refusal actions.
Debt Collective organizer Ann Larson compared the action to work stoppages conducted by the labor movement.
“This is the same kind of collective organizing,” she told Al Jazeera. “Collective bargaining can happen along economic lines when debtors join together.”
For their test case, Debt Collective selected a particularly ripe target: Corinthian Colleges has been the subject of state and federal investigations regarding its lending practices. Since June 2014 the company has been under tight financial supervision from the DOE, which is shepherding it through the process of selling off some of its campuses and shutting down others.
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