Yesterday was International Literacy Day, and to mark the occasion, Mayor Michael A. Nutter joined Free Library President and Director Siobhan A. Reardon at the Parkway Central Library to speak about issues related to workforce literacy in Philadelphia, where 52% of the city’s adults cannot read well enough to navigate a simple job application form. Together, Reardon and Mayor Nutter laid out a new literacy agenda that included ways to combat the problem and help every Philadelphian become a literate and fully contributing member of the workforce. Mayor Nutter stressed the importance of education and emphasized his belief that being literate allows one to be free.
Mayor Nutter also announced his new appointments to the Mayor's Commission on Literacy (MCOL), which has been part of the Free Library of Philadelphia since 2004. MCOL’s mission is to ensure that every Philadelphia adult has the literacy skills necessary for the workforce, for parenting, and for community life. New commissioners include author and Free Library of Philadelphia Board of Trustees member Leslie Esdaile Banks; Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation Board of Directors members Dan Gordon and Marciene Mattleman; and Free Library Materials Manager Carla Gaskin. Check out our recent blog post to learn more about the Mayor’s Commission on Literacy.