CUPE is happy to highlight International Literacy Day. But it’s not easy to do this year because literacy is threatened by the Federal Government and Minister Jason Kenney of Employment and Social Economic Development Department (ESDC). Earlier this year, Minister Kenney decided that it was no longer supporting core funding for 22 provincial, territorial and national literacy organizations.
Many literacy organizations such as COPIAN, ABC Life Literacy Canada, Canadian Literacy & Learning Network and The Centre for Literacy, are scrambling to find ways to keep their doors open, support learners and educators and continue important research.
Unfortunately, Minister Kenney’s decision has already caused damaged. Many organizations have had to lay off staff and cut services. It is unfortunate that our international reputation in the field of literacy is threatened by this decision. Especially considering that ESDC still has millions of dollars in its coffers that have yet to be spent.
We encourage you to write your MP and Minister Jason Kenney.
September 8 was proclaimed International Literacy Day by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on November 17, 1965. It has been celebrated each year since 1966, by educational institutions and literacy organizations around the world.