SOURCE: ABC Life Literacy Canada

ABC Life Literacy Canada

September 28, 2015 12:37 ET

ABC Life Literacy Canada Announces Strategic Partnerships to Improve Workplace Training Through UP Initiative

Organizations Collaborate to Advance Canadians' Literacy and Essential Skills Through a Groundbreaking a Multi-stakeholder Initiative

TORONTO, ON--(Marketwired - September 28, 2015) - On Friday September 25 in honour of Essential Skills Day, ABC Life Literacy Canada (ABC) hosted a roundtable discussion: Skills for Tomorrow, Today in Toronto, Ontario. Leaders in the essential skills and training sectors participated in a rich conversation that concluded that increased literacy and essential skills training in Canadian workplaces will result in better outcomes for the economy and the lives of workers.

ABC used this opportunity to make several important partnership announcements in support of their newest initiative-UP (upskill.ca). Poised to provide a solution to the urgent need for workplace literacy and essential skills training, UP's goal is to form a national literacy and essentials skills (LES) hub where Canadians can find resources to develop these critical skills to succeed and thrive at work and where employers will find tools and supports to inform workplace training practices that meet business needs. UPwill also become the network for LES thought-leaders and influencers to convene to inform and transform policy.

"Creating change requires a collaborative approach among multi-industry stakeholders to achieve and multiply impact," said Gillian Mason, President of ABC Life Literacy Canada. "Every working person needs strong essential skills to be successful in the workplace, yet nearly 50% of Canadians are ill-equipped to perform at their best. ABC values lifelong learning and champions transformative approaches to increasing the essential skills of Canadians. UP is a social enterprise that will bring together national partner organizations who are committed to advancing Canadians' literacy and essential skills through workplace learning-to make lasting impact for the Canadian economy and the well-being of Canadian workers."

New partnerships that will start to close the skills gap and improve Canada's economy, health, and well being through LES include:

  • Canadian Chamber of Commerce -- will work with ABC to explore ways to formalize the long-standing shared interest and commitment to improving essential skills training in Canada
  • Excellence in Manufacturing Consortium / Canadian Manufacturing Network -- is collaborating to increase the uptake of WLES training in the manufacturing sector.
  • The Institute for Performance and Learning (formerly Canadian Society for Training and Development) -- with input from ABC, will incorporate LES and essential skills practitioners into their robust competency framework.
  • Skills Canada -- in partnership with ABC, has created a national survey to evaluate young Canadian's understanding of essential skills in their lives and workplaces. Results include:

    • Nearly two thirds of Canadian youth surveyed agree that low literacy among Canadians is a big problem in Canada.

    • The vast majority of Canadian youth say essential skills are important to their everyday lives (99%). In fact, nearly two thirds agree essential skills are 'very important'.

    • 66% of respondents indicated that the opportunity to learn new skills is "very valuable".
  • Watch for a significant partnership announcement in February 2016

About ABC Life Literacy Canada:

ABC Life Literacy Canada is a non-profit organization that inspires Canadians to increase their literacy skills. We mobilize business, government and communities to support lifelong learning and achieve our goals through leadership in programs, communications and partnerships. ABC Life Literacy Canada envisions a Canada where everyone has the skills they need to live a fully engaged life. For the latest news and information on adult literacy please visit www.abclifeliteracy.ca, follow us on Twitter or join our Facebook page.

Essential skills training in the workplace provides proven solutions for adapting to changes in business, health and safety concerns, errors and waste, incorrect paperwork and document use and communications, teamwork and leadership needs. The nine essential skills, used by employees in every job are: reading, writing, numeracy, document use, oral communication, working with others, computer use, thinking skills and continuous learning. Visit upskill.ca for information, resources and tools to help make essential skills training a priority in workplaces across Canada.

Contact Information

  • For more media information, please contact:

    Stephanie Wells
    Manager, Communications
    ABC Life Literacy Canada
    1-800-303-1004 ext. 122
    swells@abclifeliteracy.ca