Why a literacy declaration?
In Europe we face serious literacy challenges: one in five 15-year-olds and nearly 55 million adults lack basic literacy skills and in the last 10 years there has been little improvement in the levels of literacy in Europe. International ELINET experts have discovered that the Universal Declaration is too unspecific with regard to literacy.
Literacy has been recognized as a human right for over 50 years in several international declarations and initiatives. Since its creation, UNESCO has promoted literacy as a right: 1975 Persepolis Declaration, 1997 Hamburg Declaration, 2006-2015 Literacy Initiative for Empowerment (LIFE), with a focus on those countries that face the biggest literacy challenges, mainly in Africa and Asia.
Everyone in Europe has the right to acquire literacy. EU Member States should ensure that people of all ages, regardless of social class, religion, ethnicity, origin and gender, are provided with the necessary resources and opportunities to develop sufficient and sustainable literacy skills in order to effectively understand and use written communication be in handwritten, in print or digital form.
A Declaration of European Citizens' Right to Literacy was thus developed to re-emphasize this universal right.
Film: The Declaration of European Citizens' Right to Literacy
Download the Declaration
The Declaration of European Citizens' Right to Literacy is available in several different languages below.