Meeting of the Council of the Federation


Premiers announced today their decision to create the Council of the Federation Literacy Award.

These Awards will encourage private and public sector organizations to develop their own workplace literacy programs and strategies. The Awards will recognize organizations showing leadership in this field, and assist them in further developing their ideas and sharing them with smaller companies and organizations that may not have the resources to develop such programs.

Literacy is a problem that affects all parts of Canada. The social and economic impacts of literacy are broad-ranging and dramatic. Literacy not only affects the ability of parents to teach their children, but of adults to meet their financial, health care and other needs.

The unemployment rate for those with the lowest literacy levels is 26 percent compared with 4 percent for those with the highest levels. In the face of growing labour shortages, improving Canada’s literacy levels is one way to ensure that we make the most of our available workforce.

Premiers have also asked their education and labour market ministers to review best practices in each province and territory in order to share the most successful strategies and approaches to this long standing problem.

Premiers will ask their ministers to implement the awards program concept, defining the amount of the award, the number of awards to be provided and the administrative structure for the award program.

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For more information:

Patrick Dorsey
Premier Pat Binns’ Office