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Google will assist workers repay scholar loans in debt disaster

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Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, speaks at the company's 2016 Google I / O conference in Mountain View, California.

Justin Sullivan | Getty Images

Google's most recent benefit to employees in attracting talent is help with student loans.

Beginning in 2021, Google will raise up to $ 2,500 per full-time per year for its student loan payments, according to an internal email from CNBC, John Casey, director of global benefits at Google, told employees on Thursday.

"College degrees are inaccessible to too many people around the world, and the mounting debt crisis in student loans has widened an already widespread wealth gap worldwide," Casey said in Thursday's email. He added that Americans in particular are facing a student loan deficit of more than $ 1.5 trillion, double what it was a decade ago.

The company's new perk is to help students save the extra cash so they can buy a house or start a family, for example, Casey said in a blog post Thursday.

Google will initially introduce the new benefit in the United States, but plans to expand it to employees worldwide. During the fourth quarter, the company will "collect additional information to inform the rollout," Casey said in the email. "It gets complicated with different lenders from country to country," he added.

The new perk is that the company, whose famous in-office perks are not available when working remotely, competes against tech companies like Facebook and Apple for young tech talent. The cost of living is particularly high in the San Francisco Bay Area, where the majority of technology companies and employees are headquartered.

Casey said the latest announcement is an extension of employee training costs and has partnered with Google's employee resource groups Black Googler Network and Black Leadership Advisory Group, which he has credited with "helping us with this."

"With the student loan burden disproportionately affecting color and women's communities, this is also a step towards building a fairer Google," Casey said in Thursday's email.

The new benefit does not apply to Google's approximately 130,000 contractors and temporary workers – only to the company's approximately 123,000 full-time employees.

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Katherine Clark