NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh promises to forgive up to $20,000 in student debt

It's one of several promises aimed at college and university students

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      Last weekend, the NDP promised money for renters if it's elected to form Canada's next government on September 20.

      Earlier this week, the party promised lower cellphone and Internet bills.

      Today, party leader Jagmeet Singh pledged to make things easier for students.

      At a campaign stop in Sudbury, Ontario, Singh said that he supports forgiving up to $20,000 in student-loan debt and doubling student grants. 

      In addition, he reiterated a longstanding NDP promise to remove interest from federal student loans. Plus, he endorsed allowing students not to have to replay federal student loans in the first five years after graduating.

      “When Justin Trudeau promised to help students, he used the opportunity to hand a $900 million contract to his friends at WE,” Singh said in a news release. “When banks and big corporations asked for help, Justin Trudeau rushed billions of dollars to them with no strings attached. Rising student debt should be something a prime minister wants to fight—not cash in on.

      "I’m not Justin Trudeau," he continued. "I will stand up for students and forgive student debt so they can have a better head start for a brighter future.”

      Singh's news release did not include a cost estimate for these promises. According to an NDP spokesperson, the parliamentary budget officer has estimated that the plan will cost $3.95 billion over five years.

      The promise to forgive student debt up to $20,000 also applies to students who've already graduated.

      In a separate news release, the NDP has also taken aim at the Liberals and Conservatives for making "life more expensive for people". The news release listed the following three points to back up this claim:

      1. They both voted against a cap on cell phonebills.
      2. They teamed up to vote against eliminating prescription drug costs.
      3. They both voted against making the biggest corporations and the rich pay their share so that money could be invested in people.