Target: U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi
Goal: End practice of arresting people for student loan debt after man was dragged out of his home by U.S. marshals.
A man was reportedly confronted in his home by seven U.S. marshals with guns and combat gear, dragged out of his home, and jailed because he still had $1,500 in student loans from 1987. This man, Paul Aker, says he was not read his rights, given no legal representation, but was forced to spend time in jail and then sign a repayment plan in front of a judge.
This is apparently not an isolated incident. The federal government has turned to private debt collector companies that use lawyers to get judges to send armed U.S. marshals to people’s homes where unsuspecting debtors are suddenly arrested. This could be a very traumatizing experience for people who owe paltry amounts, but the government doesn’t seem to care.
This treatment is reminiscent of debtor prisons from past centuries that are supposed to be illegal in this country. It seems that not only are our citizens expected to go into extreme debt to get an education necessary for jobs that actually pay a living wage, they’re now be treated like criminals if they can’t pay up. This needs to be addressed and corrected immediately. Sign to demand that congress acts to end the jailing of those with student loan debt.
Dear Minority Leader Pelosi,
Recently, a man opened the door to his home to find himself faced with seven U.S. marshals with guns and combat armor who were there to arrest him and take him to jail. His crime was that he owed $1,500 in student loans from the 1980’s.
Have debtors prisons suddenly become legal again in the United States? It’s bad enough that we’ve let tuition prices get so out of control when a college education is practically essential to making a living wage these days. It’s also bad enough that we’ve put such a high interest rate on these loans, forcing everyone not born into a rich family to pay even more for their education.
Now it seems that the debt collection on these loans has been contracted out to private debt collectors who can actually get a judge to send U.S. marshals to people’s homes to violently arrest them under the threat of possibly lethal force. This is absolutely unacceptable treatment of people who are just trying to get by.
How things were allowed to get this bad is beyond me. This man, Paul Aker, doesn’t even owe very much and does not deserve to be treated like a criminal. We demand that legislation be introduced to make this treatment of anyone with any amount of debt illegal.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: hardtopeel