WASHINGTON, D.C. – Moments ago, Varshini Prakash of the Sunrise Movement (self-described as “a movement to stop climate change and create millions of new jobs in the process”) rallied millions of young people striking for climate action in one the largest youth-led demonstrations in American history. Following her remarks, the crowd began marching to Battery Park, where 16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg will give her remarks later this afternoon.
“Friday is about putting the entire political establishment on notice that our generation is energized and mobilized, and we’re watching you,” said Prakash, co-founder and executive director of Sunrise Movement. “Our message is clear: our movement is growing, and young people in the U.S. are coming together by the hundreds of thousands — millions — to make clear that if politicians want our generation’s support, they need to treat this crisis like the emergency that it is and fight for a Green New Deal.”
The strikes were organized by a coalition of youth-led climate organizations known as the Youth Climate Strike Coalition. The coalitions’ demands are anchored in a vision of a Green New Deal era, where the governing agenda becomes transforming America’s energy, food, and transportation systems to 100% renewable energy and creating millions of good jobs in this process. Sunrise Movement, the youth climate activist group that popularized the Green New Deal, announced recently that it will continue to strike until that happens.
“I’m on strike from school today because half of my family lost their homes in Hurricane Michael last year but are still living in trailers,” said Lilly Walsingham, 21, who grew up in Orlando, Florida and is an organizer with the Sunrise Movement. “The political establishment is asleep at the wheel, and we won’t rest until it wakes up.”
* This article was automatically syndicated and expanded from Common Dreams.