Aussie School Students Are Striking Against Climate Inaction

by: Lucy Jones | 9 months ago | News

Demonstrators calling for the protection of the Great Barrier Reef. Image source.

Thousands of Australian students will skip school this Friday to protest government inaction on climate change. Kids all around the country are going on strike to demand that politicians take the future of the planet seriously. The School Strike 4 Climate Action was inspired by a 15-year-old Swedish student, Greta Thunberg, who has been sitting outside parliament in Stockholm every Friday to protest the government's environment policies.

"The adults have failed us. And since most of them, including the press and the politicians, keep ignoring the situation, we must take action into our own hands," Thunberg told The Guardian last week.

Students in Australia's major cities and 20 regional areas are planning to walk out of class this Friday.

"We are striking from school to tell our politicians to take our futures seriously and treat climate change for what it is — a crisis," the School Strike 4 Climate Action website reads.

Three students from Castlemaine Steiner school and Castlemaine North primary school in Victoria started protesting outside local politician's offices last week. These students collaborated with the Australian Youth Climate Coalition to set up the Strike 4 Climate Action. 

“We think it's important because it's a huge problem," fourteen-year-old Castlemaine Steiner school student, Milou Albrecht, told The Guardian.

"The Earth is already too hot, with droughts in winter in NSW and the coral reef is dying," she continued. "I would like our politicians to acknowledge climate change is an emergency and take the necessary steps in order to have a sustainable world."

The prime minister has already dismissed these protests saying these issues "can be dealt with outside of school". During question time in parliament on Monday, Scott Morrison angrily condemned the protest. 

"Each day I send my kids to school and I know other members' kids should also go to school but we do not support our schools being turned into parliaments," Morrison said. 

"What we want is more learning in schools and less activism in schools."

Australian Youth Climate Coalition spokesperson Laura Sykes was disturbed by this display of "irrational outrage".

"It was shocking see our prime minister condemning students as young as eight, who are sacrificing a day of schooling to stand up for a safe climate future," she told AAP.

"When young people try to have a voice in politics, Scott Morrison is shutting them down, yet he's happy to listen to the coal lobby and big corporations who continue to profit from making climate change worse."

We know what we'll be doing on Friday!

Head here for more information about the School Strike 4 Climate Action and to find out how you can participate in the movement. 

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