New Brunswick Government places six-month pause on student loan payments

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The Government of New Brunswick has paused student loan payment requirements for six months, reducing the stress on students and recent graduates during social isolation.

“During this crisis, the burden will fall heavily on the most vulnerable in our society—students and recent graduates included,” The New Brunswick Student Alliance said in an email. “We are grateful to the Government of New Brunswick for their support during this time.”

This brings relief to many students and graduates in New Brunswick who have been concerned about provincial loan payments since the federal government announced their plan to pause payments.

This was decided shortly after the federal government announced their plan to pause student loan payments for six months. Student loans are usually provided in part by the federal government and the provincial government.

“COVID-19 is changing the post-secondary landscape on a daily basis right now,” said Adam Brown, Chair of the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations, in response to the federal government announcing the pause. “This pause on student loan payments is much needed relief for Canadian students and recent graduates as many will struggle to maintain their current income levels and even more will struggle to find work in the months ahead.”

Students and graduates do not need to enrol for this benefit, anyone paying off student loans in New Brunswick is enrolled automatically.

Summer jobs up in the air

There are many students still concerned about summer employment. Many students live on their own, have dependants and rely on income from summer work to pay bills and rent. Despite this decrease in student loan payments, current students still have to find summer employment, which may prove difficult with social isolation.

The Student Employment Experience Development (SEED) program was recently reduced by the New Brunswick government, not in relation to COVID-19, which further reduces student employment opportunities this summer. The SEED program provides funding to business that wish to hire students to reduce the overall cost of paying them.