Literacy Initiative Roll-Out Begins

Detroit Councilman Gabe Leland begins roll-out of
Literacy Initiative targeted to children in District 7

Leland read to students Thursday morning at Ann Arbor Trail Magnet school


DETROIT (February 14, 2014) – Detroit Councilman Gabe Leland has embarked on a mission to help reduce illiteracy in the city, especially among the city’s youth. This week, he began to roll-out a literacy initiative that partners with schools to provide encouragement toward reading success.

Leland’s roll-out theme for Detroit’s children is, “I read, I learn because it is important to my future.”

“Illiteracy in our community is a major contributor to the economic disparity gap,” said Leland who earned a degree from Central Michigan University. “It limits our potential. I am launching the literacy initiative because I believe that every Detroiter has great potential for success in life. Limited reading skills should not be a roadblock to more possibilities.”

Thursday, February 13, Leland read to four classes at Ann Arbor Trail Magnet school on the city’s far west side. The school has grades pre-kindergarten through fifth. In addition to reading to the students, he spoke about the importance of reading that leads to college, a career and greater potential in life.

“When I was a kid, my favorite book was ‘Cat in the Hat’, which made reading fun,” said Leland. “Reading continues to be fun today. I always want to learn and excel. And, studying documents are an essential part of my role as an elected official in order to make an educated decision.”

Leland’s Literacy Initiative will partner with schools, parent organizations, and community groups to provide encouragement and support. He commits to set an example for strong reading skills as a fellow citizen and as a councilman.

“I am committed to learning, to reading every day,” Leland added. “In my reading, I want to better understand our world and help make our neighborhoods and our city stronger. The Literacy Initiative is a long-term vision that I will undertake. Strong reading skills will help Detroit children be more successful in school and be better prepared for the adult chapter of their lives. Through this initiative, we will also reach out to adults who face reading challenges so that it opens up more possibilities for them.”

Leland will participate in several reading events during March is Reading Month. The dates and locations will be announced in the near future, and additional Literacy Initiative events will be publicized throughout this year.

About Detroit Councilman Gabe Leland
Gabe Leland serves citizens in the new District 7 on Detroit’s west side as councilman. He was elected in November 2013 as one of seven council members who represent citizens in the city’s new district format. Leland is a former elected member of the Michigan House of Representatives – District 10, serving constituents in northwest Detroit. While a state representative, he was chair of the House Committee on Urban Policy. As a council member, Leland chairs the Planning and Economic Development Committee and serves on the boards of the Eastern Market Corporation and Tech Town.