School students take part in a climate change strike in Brisbane, Friday, March 16, 2019. The strike is part of a global campaign to call for urgent action on climate change. (AAP Image/Dan Peled) NO ARCHIVING
School students take part in a climate change strike in Brisbane, Friday, March 16, 2019. The strike is part of a global campaign to call for urgent action on climate change. (AAP Image/Dan Peled) NO ARCHIVING

Student strikes cancelled amid coronavirus risk

STUDENT climate strikes have been cancelled and a ban imposed on all activist public events and replaced by "powerful online activities" in light of the rapid spread of the deadly coronavirus.

In a statement School Strike 4 climate Australia told supporters they had been monitoring the situation for weeks and felt this was the only responsible course of action to take.

School students take part in a climate change strike in Brisbane, Friday, March 16, 2019. The strike is part of a global campaign to call for urgent action on climate change. (AAP Image/Dan Peled) NO ARCHIVING
School students take part in a climate change strike in Brisbane, Friday, March 16, 2019. The strike is part of a global campaign to call for urgent action on climate change. (AAP Image/Dan Peled) NO ARCHIVING

The decision was taken given the "serious health risks posed by the pandemic; the overwhelming evidence that early social distancing is critical for preventing COVID-19's spread; the Government ban on all public events of 500 people or more; [and] the likelihood that the pandemic will continue well beyond May and peak in Australia during our Winter," the statement said.

"This decision applies to anyone holding a Strike, even those expecting less than 500 people.

"Further, our insurance does not cover pandemics, so if you decide to hold an event, we will be unable to support you.

 

 

"Given the compelling research on the impact of early social distancing, we are also instituting a 30 day ban from Monday 16th March until Wednesday 15th April on all public events associated with School Strike 4 Climate."

But the climate change advocates are still intending to hold "powerful online activities" on May 15 with details to be announced soon.

"While this is incredibly disappointing for everyone who has been working so hard to make the next #ClimateStrike huge, we feel this is the right decision to protect the health of everyone, in particular vulnerable people in our community who are at risk from the virus," the statement said.

 


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