More than 74 businesses including Penguin Random House, Hachette, HarperCollins and WHSmith have signed the Vision for Literacy Business Pledge 2019.
Companies that have signed the pledge are committed to tackling literacy challenges in their workshops and in their local communities, as well as to helping out with wider, national literacy campaigns. Other organisations that have signed up include John Lewis, easyJet and the Premier League.
Jonathan Douglas, director of the NLT, said: “Literacy remains one of the UK’s greatest challenges. Thousands of children start school every year without the reading, writing and communication skills they needed to succeed at school, at work and in life. These young people are Britain’s workforce of the future but, by the time they enter the workforce, they will have lower literacy skills than the older generations they will succeed. As we prepare to leave the EU, this skills gap puts our future economic competiveness and sustainability in a troubling position.
“With the backing of major UK businesses, we have the power to transform these young lives through literacy. We are delighted to be working with so many fantastic organisations this year who are committed to creating a society where all children and young people have the same opportunities to fulfil their potential.”
The scheme was established in 2015 by the National Literacy Forum and is led by the NLT in partnership with KMPG. Since the launch the number of signatories has risen by 73%, said the NLT.