Government plans to impose student loan repayments at lower income threshold – barely above real ‘living wage’ – will hit low-earning students hard
The government plans to retrospectively change the repayment terms on student loans taken out by some 1.3 million students and counting, by lowering the income threshold at which repayments start to be made from more than £27,000 to just £22,000.
As an hourly rate, that works out at around just £11.20 an hour, barely above the real living wage (not the government’s retitled minimum wage) – and would mean an additional financial hit of about £475 a year.
That’s a financial penalty imposed on more than a million students who signed contracts stipulating a repayment threshold that is now being dropped without their agreement or even a sham ‘consultation’.
When tuition fees were increased to a crippling £9,000 a year, government talking heads routinely excused the increase by saying it would not really be as big a burden because students would not have to start repaying until they were earning good salaries – now, having conned and exploited students then, the Tories plan to gouge them deeper still.
Labour under Jeremy Corbyn pledged to scrap tuition fees altogether. Keir Starmer has scrapped his promise to maintain the party’s policies under Corbyn, despite the argument having already been thoroughly won on that and numerous other issues, with the public massively backing renationalisation and investment.
Nick Clegg’s betrayal of students over tuition fees after the 2010 general election cost the LibDems 86% of their seats at the 2015 election.
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