This is a guide for adults that wish to show their solidarity with young people taking strike action for climate justice.

You can show your support by:

1. Enabling your child, or a child you care for, to attend Youth Strike 4 Climate demonstrations

  • Write a letter to give permission for your child or the child you care for to be absent from school for the strike, under ‘exceptional circumstances’.  You can find suggested templates for a letter here

  • Support your child or child you care for to attend a strike

  • If your child or the child you care for is old enough to attend a strike without a parent or guardian discuss how they feel about attending a strike and show support for their undertaking of legal action for climate justice

  • Discuss with your child or child you care for how to stay safe at a strike such as: not giving out personal contact details to adults they don’t already know or by signing up to mailing lists or petitions, what to do if they do not feel safe and how to locate a responsible adult, how to deal with the media, including informing reporters or photographers they are under 18 and require permission from a legal guardian to be featured

2. Encouraging schools and local authorities to be supportive of children striking for climate justice

  • If you have links to a school such as being a staff member, parent or carer, or school charity worker; contact the Headteacher, school governors or trustees to explain why you support their students striking for climate justice

  • If you have links to a local authority such as being a staff member or a resident, contact the school attendance team and your local councillors to explain why you support students striking for climate justice in their area

  • If you have a position of power at a school or local authority such as a headteacher, school governor or trustee or elected member of a council, declare your support for students taking strike action for climate justice

3. Letting your local media know you support the student strikes

  • You can write to your local newspaper to state why you support the strike

  • If you hear of a school or local authority that punishes students for taking part in a strike, as a community write a letter to your local newspaper in support of the students’ rights to strike

  • A template is below for communities to write to their local newspaper in support of the student strike

4. Letting young people lead

  • Whilst we appreciate your enthusiasm for climate justice, it is important that the Youth Strike 4 Climate is led by young people and their voices are centred in their movement

  • If you attend a strike in solidarity with the students striking please platform their voice by choosing to not take up space on speaking a stage, using a microphone or loudspeaker or in the media

  • If you have a relevant announcement to make, talk to a student organiser about your idea and respect their decision on if it is relevant to their strike

  • Take time to think about the power dynamic between adults and young people and consider if you should be asking young people to promote your cause or announcement and if it could detract from the set of strike demands

  • If you have placards or banners relating to your organisation or allied cause, ask student organisers if these will be welcome at their strike before using them

5. Taking action yourself

Template Letter: Community Support for Student Climate Strikes

Editor’s Name
Newspaper Name
Editor’s Address

Dear Editor,

We, the undersigned residents of <insert your area> , offer our full support to all students going on school climate strike

We implore local head teachers <insert name of unsupportive schools or local authority, if appropriate> not to stand in the way of students wishing to protest on this most important of issues.

Students have every right to be angry about the threat to the planet’s future and we are inspired by students’ courage in standing in solidarity with other school pupils taking action all around the world.

Greta Thunberg, a 17 year old girl, started striking in September last year and has since then gained followers globally, protesting about the lack of awareness, action or concern   We believe this action will put pressure on our authorities, government and media to inform people about the true scale of ecological disaster and put pressure on them to cooperate globally, as children are doing in their strikes, to act with due speed and ambition to create more resilient communities and a better future for the youth of today.

The UN IPCC report from October 2018, gave governments of the world just 12 years to go before we’re on course for dangerous levels of climate change. In that time we need to reduce current emissions by 50% as well as remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere to avert the worst effects of climate change.

According to a World Wildlife fund report, which came just a few weeks after the UN climate report, we’ve lost 60% of populations of animals with backbones since 1970. We’ve lost 83% of numbers of fresh-water animals.

Today’s children face an unsafe future, with extreme weather causing crop failures and food shortages. They have a right to demand that adults do better by them. We hope that standing up for their future will be a learning and empowering experience which our schools and community support.


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