David Baldacci and ProLiteracy Call on Congress
New York Times bestselling author David Baldacci met with Congressional leaderson September 21 to urge them to protect adult literacy funding.He also encouraged Congress to better connect literacy programs with job training and economic development projects in an effort to help more adults find jobs.
“I believe that our democracy depends on a literate population, but the sad truth is that more than30 million Americans are unable to read or write well enough to meet the daily demands of life in the 21st century,” says Baldacci.“As Washington, D.C., prepares to highlight the importance of reading with the National Book Festival, this is an opportune time to reiterate the importance of maintaining federal funding for literacy programs.”
With Baldacci was David C. Harvey, president and CEO of ProLiteracy. They met with House adult literacy caucus chair Phil Roe (R-TN); House education committee chair Edward Kline (R-MN); ranking labor/HHS appropriations chair Rosa DeLauro (D-CT); Senate appropriations chair Thad Cochran (R-MS); and Senate labor/HHS authorizing committee chair Mike Enzi (R-WY).
“I am grateful to David Baldacci for his dedication to raising awareness of the adult literacy crisis in America, an issue that is inextricably linked to economic recovery, a skilled workforce, and U.S. global competitiveness,” Harvey says. “Against the backdrop of the National Book Festival’s focus on reading, it is critical that Congress remember that there are millions of people who want to experience the joys of reading, but need access to the resources and services that can only be found through community literacy programs.”
David Baldacci created the Wish You Well Foundation to support community-based literacy programs throughout the United States. Many of the programs have experienced an unprecedented increase in demand for services that teach basic reading, writing, math, and computer literacy skills to adults and young people. The Wish You Well Foundation supports many community-based literacy programs that are members of ProLiteracy, the largest and oldest adult literacy organization in the United States.