Thousands of UK kids skip school for climate protests

16 February, 2019 12:00 AM printer

LONDON: Thousands of schoolchildren went on “strike” across Britain on Friday in a protest against climate change, with hundreds rallying in London’s Parliament Square, reports AFP.

Children of all ages chanted “save our planet”, cheered as flares were lit and clambered onto statues in the shadow of Big Ben to call for action, and to raise awareness.

“As humans, we got ourselves into this predicament, it’s our responsiblity to get out of it,” said 15-year-old Hal, who normally attends a shool in Hammersmith, west London.

“As well as being a message to the politicians, it’s a way to spread awareness to everyone,” added the teenager, who was wearing his school uniform “to accentuate the fact that I should be at school”. 

The protesters waved makeshift placards reading “Make Earth Cool Again,” “Don’t Mess With My Mother”, “We Stand For What We Stand On” and “I’m Getting Detention For This.”

There were similar protests in dozens of towns and cities, including Brighton, Leeds, Manchester and Oxford. Many of the children said their schools had shown them leniency in attending the “Youth Strike 4 Climate” event, part of a Europe-wide movement that has seen walkouts in Belgium, France, Germany, and Sweden.

“I’m originally from Germany so my friends already did it, then I saw people talk about it, and I said ‘Oh my god, I’ve got to come,” art student Emily El-Harake, 17, told AFP.