Last Friday I was one of the 100,000 – 150,000 people who attended the Global Climate Strike in Melbourne. I am a strong believer in people power for change. I think people often forget that whenever there is a social or environmental movement, it comes from communities to influence up to government level. That is how women got the vote, same sex marriage legalised etc.
It was amazing seeing all the people attending on Friday, led by high school students. It was really hard to get a sense of how many there were. But there were a lot of dogs and babies and students and grannies – all clutching signs. Just everyone who cares strongly about a safe ecological future and climate justice. I love attending rallies and I feel like this is one for the history books. There is a strong sense of unity and community and often it can get emotional because it's nice to know that people really do care. Sometimes the loudest voices seem to be the nay-sayers, such as the climate denialists. But at the Global Climate Strike they were drowned out.
Remarkably, there was not a single arrest. Imagine that, 100,000 plus people in a peaceful protest. And people are fired up. This is just the beginning. And everyone has a role to play, young, old and everything in between.
Photo caption: Lydia Hartwig, Ursula, and Shannon.
By Shannon McKeogh, Media Advisor, YMCA Victoria