EDITORIAL: Literacy rules above all else

Literacy must be kept at the forefront in Alberni.

September is literacy month in the Alberni Valley, and indeed this week you will have seen an emphasis on literacy through both the announcement of our editor, Susan Quinn’s Peter Gzowski Life Literacy Fellowship, and the annual Raise a Reader campaign that our compatriots at Literacy Alberni and the AV Times are running. While we each have our separate campaigns on which to focus, our goal is a common one: to keep the importance of literacy in the forefront of our attention.

This becomes doubly important when we hear rumours coming out of the annual Union of B.C. Municipalities meeting that funding for our local non-profit literacy organization is likely going to be eliminated in 2015. At the same time, the Alberni Valley’s level of illiteracy sits at a painful 40 per cent.

Literacy forms the foundation of a community’s health and wealth, both economically and socially. ‘Canadians must be equipped—whether it is to decode a training manual, balance a chequing account, interpret a construction blueprint, understand a tenancy agreement, share a story with their children, complete a school form, create a resume or comprehend their cell phone bill,’ says Gillian Mason, president of ABC Life Literacy.

‘Life today requires higher levels of literacy than ever before,’ she added.

Armed with this knowledge, it then puzzles us as to why the provincial and federal governments think it’s acceptable to cut funding for programs that help people attain such a vital skill. Our municipal leaders are trying to convince higher levels that they are wrong.

We implore the remaining 60 per cent of our community who are literate to keep up the pressure on various levels of government to adequately fund literacy programs. It will benefit us all in the long run.

— Alberni Valley News

Just Posted

B.C. declares state of emergency as wildfires rage

More than 3,300 firefighters are battling more than 500 fires

ARTS AROUND: It’s time to get creative with myriad workshops

Summer camps at Rollin Art Centre in Port Alberni are wrapping up

Alberni lacrosse players compete in national tournament

The B.C. bantam team finished fourth out of twelve teams

Port Alberni RCMP recover stolen tool chest

Police still searching for the rightful owner

Kuu-us Crisis Service celebrates 25th anniversary

Port Alberni-based business sets sights on national realm

Average Canadian family spends 43% of income on taxes: study

Fraser Institute’s consumer report shows taxes accounting for larger chunk of income each year

Thieves steal supplies, tools and juice boxes from B.C. summer camp

‘Take a moment to think about who you stole from,’ says Burns Bog Society’s Mark Robertson

Women-owned businesses generate $68,000 less revenue than men’s: survey

When Dionne Laslo-Baker sought a bank loan to expand her burgeoning organic popsicle and freezies business in 2014, she was “shocked” by the feedback she received from one of the bankers.

Hedley frontman’s alleged sex offences case returns to court

Jacob Hoggard faces three sexual assault-related charges will return to a Toronto courtroom this morning.

Climate change likely to cause more sewage leaks, says environment minister

More than one hundred municipal wastewater systems did not report how much raw sewage overflowed from their pipes in 2017.

Priests molested 1,000 children in Pennsylvania, report says

The “real number” of abused children and abusive priests might be higher since some secret church records were lost and some victims never came forward.

Defiant as Trump rages, Omarosa says she won’t be silenced

Manigault Newman declared she will not be silenced by President Donald Trump, remaining defiant as her public feud with her former boss shifted from a war of words to a possible legal battle.

Death toll hits 39 in Italy bridge collapse; blame begins

The collapse of the Morandi Bridge sent dozens of cars and three trucks plunging as much as 45 metres (150 feet) to the ground Tuesday.

Most Read