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Brazil: National Policy on Reading and Writing Enacted

(July 25, 2018) The first National Policy on Reading and Writing (PolĂ­tica Nacional de Leitura e Escrita) was established in Brazil on July 12, 2018, through the enactment of Law No. 13,696. (Lei No. 13.696, de 12 de Julho de 2018, Presidency of the Republic website.)

The policy was instituted as a permanent strategy to promote universal access to books, reading, writing, literature, and libraries in the country (id. art. 1) and must be implemented by the Union, through the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Education, in cooperation with the States, the Federal District, and the Municipalities, and with the participation of civil society and private institutions (id. art. 1 (sole para.)).

In addition to promoting universal access to literacy and libraries, the guidelines of the policy include the recognition of reading and writing as a right and affording everyone with the skills to fully exercise citizenship, live a dignified life, and contribute to the construction of a more just society. (Id. art. 2(I), (II).)

Other objectives of the policy are to promote the training of reading mediators (mediadores) and develop the book economy as a stimulus to intellectual production and strengthening the national economy. (Id. art. 3(I), (II), (IV).)

In order to achieve the objectives of the policy, a National Book and Reading Plan (Plano Nacional do Livro e Leitura) will be prepared each decade to establish goals and actions in accordance with the terms of the regulation. (Id. art. 4.)