Australian students plan school strikes to protest against climate inaction
Australian education Australian students plan school strikes to protest against climate inaction
Hundreds say they will skip school, urging politicians to treat climate change as an emergency
Hundreds of students around the country are preparing to strike from school because of what they say is a failure by politicians to recognise climate change as an emergency.
Theyâve been inspired by 15-year-old Greta Thunberg, a Swedish student who has been sitting outside the parliament in central Stockholm to draw attention to the fears younger generations hold about the global climate crisis and the failure of countries to take urgent action.
Fourteen-year-old Milou Albrecht, a year 8 student at Castlemaine Steiner school in Victoria, her classmate Harriet OâShea Carre, and 11-year-old Callum Bridgefoot from Castlemaine North primary school, started by protesting last week outside of the offices of their local representatives, the Labor MP Lisa Chester and the Nationals deputy leader, Bridget McKenzie. Theyâve been joined by 50 students from local schools and are planning weekly events.The Swedish 15-year-old who's cutting class to fight the climate crisis Read more
And what began as a small local protest is growing into a nationwide movement. Students in Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra, Perth, Hobart, the Whitsundays, Lismore, the Gold Coast, Albury-Wodonga and the Sunshine Coast are planning to walk out of classes this month.
Similar plans are being explored in other regional areas including Coffs Harbour, Cairns, Townsville and the southern highlands of New South Wales. Hundreds of students have indicated they want to attend protests outside state parliaments in the capital cities on 28, 29 and 30 November.
The idea for the strikes came from the Castlemaine students, who contacted the Australian Youth Climate Coalition for help.
They have had assistance from the coalition and their parents with contacting media, building a website and spreading the word about the strikes through their social networks.
âWe think itâs important because itâs a huge problem,â Milou said. âThe Earth is already too hot, with droughts in winter in NSW and the coral reef is dying.â
She said students were speaking to Greta in Sweden each week. âI would like our politicians to acknowledge climate change is an emergency and take the necessary steps in order to have a sustainable world,â she said.
A 14-year-old Fort Street high school student, Jean Hinchliffe, is organising the Sydney walkout on 30 November. She said there was a template letter students who were worried about taking time off class could give to their teachers.
âWeâve got involved because at this stage we canât vote, weâre not politicians and we want to make a difference,â she sai d. âWe canât stand around waiting.
âI think itâs because climate change is scary seeing that itâs our future. This is a fact and not to be debated.âTopics
- Australian education
- Climate change
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