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Adult Literacy Facts

More than 20 percent of American adults – one out of every five – read at or below the fifth-grade level which is far below the level needed to earn a living wage. They cannot read to their children, fill out a job application, or pass a written driver’s test.

The SIBL Project puts stories and faces to these statistics, and thus humanizes the issue and brings focus to its challenges and solutions.

Forty-three percent of people with the lowest literacy skills live in poverty; 17% receive food stamps, and 70% have no job or work only part-time. Workers who lack a high school diploma earn a mean monthly income of $452, compared to $1,829 for those with a bachelor’s degree. Welfare recipients with low literacy skills stay on welfare the longest.

Workplace literacy programs provide workers with the skills needed to get or retain a job, advance in their careers, or increase productivity. The SIBL Project is building strong alliances with agencies who provide these programs to insure that our campaign bolsters their outreach directly to those adults who need their assistance.