Where I've Been
It’s been a busy week as I returned to the Fifth District of Missouri. My first stop was a humbling commemoration of those who have fought and died serving our country. I spoke at the Memorial Day ceremony at the National World War I Museum and Memorial. There are currently 21.4 million men and women who are veterans in our nation. Over 480,000 are right here in Missouri. It takes a brave soul to fight for people you do not know and even give the ultimate sacrifice for another’s security. I felt honored to salute all of our veterans.
This week I also held a Facebook Town Hall, our first one, which focused on the increasing problem of student loan debt. If you hadn’t had a chance to see it, watch it on my Facebook page. We answered questions from our Facebook viewers about their concerns involving student debt. Such as, how to help people struggling with high interest rates of student loan debt, and what to do if the government wants to garnish wages and also, how bankruptcy effects student loans. Over 2000 people have viewed it this week. This is an issue we will continue to work on. There are a variety of legislative options being considered. Some are focused on refinancing, some on bankruptcy, some on employer tax credits and expanding Pell grants year round. I recently signed onto legislation entitled, the Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act, H.R. 2477 which allows students loan borrowers to refinance their loans. It also allows eligible student loan borrowers to refinance their private loans into the federal program.
Before the week’s end, I was honored to attend the annual Stand Down for Homeless Vets at St. Michael’s Veterans Place. A one-day event that provided resources for those who are struggling with many issues: homelessness, mental illness, unemployment, and food insecurity. We have to do what we can to help our veterans.
Next week I will be back on Capitol Hill. Warmly, Emanuel Cleaver, II Member of Congress