Leading girls’ rights agency Plan International Australia is standing in solidarity with young people in Australia and around the world who are going on strike today to demand action on climate change.
Students are striking across 50 nations as part of the School Strikes for Climate movement, which was started by 16-year-old Swedish student Greta Thunberg.
Plan International Australia’s Director of Advocacy Hayley Cull said: “Plan International is proud to stand beside this generation of leaders and advocates for change who are today marching for their futures.
“As a champion for girls’ rights, we’d like to recognise the girls and young women who are leading the push for action to fight climate change, which is deepening gender inequalities in the hardest hit countries.
“When climate change leads to crops and livelihoods being destroyed, girls face risks to their health, safety and development. They are more likely to be removed from school to support at home and to save money. They are more likely to suffer from malnutrition and other illnesses, as their needs aren’t prioritised. And they are more likely to be forced into early marriage, and subjected to violence and abuse.
“Despite this, girls are being excluded from climate change discussions and decisions – they are least likely to be consulted, considered or included in decision-making and policy processes.
“Climate change threatens to undo the great progress we’ve made towards ending poverty, advancing gender equality and protecting the rights of children worldwide. The voices of children must be heard on this issue, which directly impacts their futures. We have made it our priority to amplify the voices of young people who are already living with the impacts of climate change.”
About Plan International
Plan International is a leading girls’ rights agency. We work alongside children, young people, supporters and partners to tackle the root causes of injustices facing girls and the most marginalised children. We respond to emergencies, including those related to climate change, to meet the needs of children and their families as quickly as possible, and we continue working with these communities afterwards to help them recover and rebuild their lives. We also work with children and their families to prepare for disasters, helping to reduce risks and save lives.
Our local office, Plan International Australia funds programs supporting children in more than 25 countries, as well as sponsorship, emergency response and disaster risk reduction programs across the federation.