The School Strike movement – SS4C – is a remarkable phenomenon, having grown from one lone teenager’s action 15 months ago to a global action which brought millions onto the streets and parks of major cities and small towns alike on Friday 20th September. Media coverage has been good enough that I don’t feel I need to say more about that here.
We attended the Townsville rally, at Strand Park. I haven’t seen official figures but my estimate was around 500 people, which is encouraging for a community of 200 000 even though it can’t compare with the thousands in Melbourne and Sydney.
I was struck by how happy, peaceful and positive the whole event was, and by how inclusive. The age range was toddlers to grandparents, and I met people from all corners of my life, from extended family to sporting groups, political contacts, musical friends, teaching colleagues and (more predictably) community activists and volunteers.
Just for fun, I started collecting T-shirts midway through the event to record as much of the diversity as possible. Clicking on most of them will take you to websites for more information.
AYCC got two guernseys because they earned them by leading the local event. Amnesty, on the other hand, missed out because the project didn’t occur to me early enough in the day; so did a couple of trade unions, the vegan group and (no doubt) others I didn’t even see. Sorry!