Student Loans Emerge as a Women’s Issue
Women graduates in 2001 paid 11% of their income toward paying off their student loans one year after graduation, according to a recent Washington Post article. In 2009, women were paying 20% a year to retire that burden. That’s almost twice as much as they faced eight years ago. Or two graduating bachelor degrees ago. Slice it up any way you like and it still chews up a lot more of a professional woman’s income than many can afford. The slices of the pie for commuting, child-care and groceries haven’t gotten any smaller to compensate. Same with the car payment. And the mortgage if you ever managed to get one. Men aren’t much better off. The percent of their income going to student loans increased from 8% in 2001 to 15% in 2009.
Nevertheless, a year after graduation a woman’s student debt burden is greater than a man’s because women earn less than men do, even in the same professions. For every dollar that a man earns, a woman currently earns 82 cents. That means women are set to take longer to get their student loans paid off.
This has become an issue among women and democrats looking at political races coming in the fall. Elizabeth Warren, Democratic senator from Massachusetts is advocating for some relief. Regardless of where women or Democrats are able to take this, a political solution may take time. A woman needs expediency. Re-casting student loan burdens by using a debt relief company to consolidate multiple loans or lower interest rates is possible in about a month or less. You can even get it done this week!