Approximately one thousand people, many of them schoolchildren, marched in Christchurch today as part of School Strikes for Climate protests taking place across the country. After some speeches and a musical performance, protesters marched through the central city and to the Christchurch City Council building on Hereford Street chanting “whose future? Our future!” and “votes, not words”.
The campaigners assembled nine candidates running for council or community boards. Candidates, including ecologist Colin Meurck, councillor Mike Davidson, and community board candidate Harrison McEvoy, committed to the School Strike’s 4 demands: to fund light rail for Canterbury, to support and expand cycleways, to promote sustainable development including intensification, and to create opportunities for climate education in schools and community spaces.
“I want it to be safer to bike to school, and that the council should build more cycleways,” said Anna, a student at Cashmere High School.
“I think council candidates should not put a bunch of money into carbon emissions, and make people more aware of climate change,” said Osa, a student at Hagley College in Christchurch, holding a sign encouraging people to vote.