Broad Coalition calls on Vermonters to join the Climate Strike

CHESTER, Vt. – Friday, Sept. 20 will be a day of climate strikes and walkouts at schools and businesses in Vermont and around the world. In Chester the strike will begin at noon on the green. Join in ringing church bells and sounding Shofars at noon. There will be music, art, and sing-alongs, and Rep. Sarah Copeland-Hanzas, co-chair of the Vermont Climate Solutions Caucus, will speak. People are invited to share their reason for striking for the climate, especially youth. At 2 p.m., we will walk to the gazebo at the Town Hall to end the rally.

September’s climate strikes continue as part of a worldwide campaign by schoolchildren calling on adults to step up, speak out, and do their share to protect current and future generations against the worst impacts of global warming. Greta Thunberg, who will speak to the U.N. climate conference Sept. 23, started the movement. With this current climate crisis and with the call to action voiced by youth globally in mind, the Vermont Strike Coalition demands the following:

  • Comprehensive and immediate solutions rooted in the respect for and dignity of all people.
  • Support for just policies that transition rapidly to a clean and renewable energy economy for all.
  • A commitment to keeping fossil fuels in the ground.
  • A just and inclusive movement that centers frontline communities.

“Vermont has always been a leader in the climate movement, and we’re heeding the call of concerned youth. We need Vermonters to step up and demand action to protect us and our children,” said Abby Mnookin of 350Vermont. “We’re asking Vermonters to go on strike Friday the 20th. If they can’t strike all day, they can temporarily walk out from their workplaces and schools to join a local event and demand action on climate change.”

Along with other strikes Sept. 20, Vermont activities planned for Sept. 20-28 are:

  • An action against fossil-fuel lobbyists;
  • Distribution of large public banners about climate change around the state;
  • A direct action targeting one of the few remaining coal plants in the Northeast; and
  • Musical performances, worship services, a tour of a regenerative agriculture farm, and more.

For more information on the dozens of upcoming events, see www.vermontclimatestrike.org/events/list.

Among the Vermont organizers of strike-related activities is Extinction Rebellion Vermont. “The damage to the Bahamas caused by Hurricane Dorian is an example of the devastating impacts of climate change and the ineffectiveness of our leadership to properly respond to the needs of people on the front lines of the crisis. As these storms are made worse by the manufacture and burning of fossil fuels, it is critical to transform our society into one that is compassionate, inclusive, sustainable, equitable, and connected,” said Dan Batten of Extinction Rebellion Vermont.

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