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The Branch County Literacy Council

Note: The Branch County Literacy Council is not part of the Branch District Library. They are a separate entity who maintains an office in the Coldwater Branch library building.

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Facts about literacy

Literacy is the ability to read, write, compute, and use technology at a level that enables a person to reach his or her full potential as a parent, employee and a member of our community.

There are 774 million adults around the world who are illiterate in their native languages.

Two-thirds of the world’s illiterate adults are women.

In the U.S., 30 million people over the age of 16 --14% of the country’s adults population-- don’t read well enough to understand a newspaper article written at an eighth level or even fill out a job application.

The United States ranks fifth on adult literacy when compared to the other industrialized countries.

Low literacy in adults can be connected to almost every socio-economic issue in the United States:

More than 60 % of all state and federal inmates can barely read and write.

Low health literacy costs the United States between $106 -$238 BILLION each
year-- 7-17% of all annual personal health care spending.

Low literacy’s effects cost the United States $225 billion each year in loss productivity in the work force. This also results in crime and loss of tax revenue
because of unemployment.

Globally, illiteracy can be linked to:

Gender abuse, including female infanticide.
Extreme poverty.
High infant mortality, the spread of HIV?AIDS, malaria and other preventable infectious diseases.

To help with these problems: call Branch County Literacy at 517-279-9833.