Global Hunger Strike Day 6: Meetings with three UK political parties confirmed
November 23, 2019 by Extinction Rebellion
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- Extinction Rebellion activists around the world continue hunger strike to demand action on the Climate and Ecological Emergency
- Hunger strikers highlight the realities we all face in this climate and ecological emergency including vulnerabilities to food shortages and act in solidarity with those already suffering.
- Extinction Rebellion is asking all UK political parties and parliamentary candidates to support the Three Demands Bill and has requested meetings with party leader to discuss their support
- In the UK hour long meetings to discuss Three Demands Bill with party leaders have been arranged with Liberal Democrats, Greens and Plaid Cymru. Labour is in discussion about a meeting, but Conservative and Brexit party are yet to respond
Extinction Rebellion protesters continue their hunger strike outside the political party headquarters through the weekend in London to demand urgent action on the climate and ecological emergency we all face, reminding politicians of what’s to come if they do not act now. Some 524 people in 28 countries have joined the global hunger strike, with 263 people in the UK.
Extinction Rebellion is asking all UK political parties and Parliamentary Candidates to support the The Climate and Ecological Emergency (“Three Demands”) Bill and have requested filmed meetings with party leaders to discuss their support. 
The Liberal Democrats, Greens and Plaid Cymru have agreed to meetings with their party leaders and Extinction Rebellion. Extinction Rebellion is in discussions with Labour about meeting, but the Conservative Party and Brexit Party have not responded.
Dr Larch Maxey, spokesperson for Extinction Rebellion, said: “The hunger strike occupations of party offices have been so successful already. With parties meeting us and supporting the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill we’ve achieved a lot this week. But we’re only just beginning. We need to build more pressure on all parties to support the Bill. Everyone can join us, whether on hunger strike, showing support or occupying party offices”
Sarah Lunnon, Political Circle Coordinator, Extinction Rebellion, said: “The Global Hunger Strike highlights those communities and families that struggle to eat today due to extremes of weather. As we continue to fuel the collapse of our life support system this hunger struggle will come to us and our children, we too are vulnerable to food shocks and to empty aisles in our supermarkets.”
Mike Goldthorn, 30, hunger striker and care worker North Wales, said: “The thinking and feeling behind the hunger strike is to highlight the vulnerability we have in food security. We are hunger striking in solidarity with the people already suffering and the generations to come. I’ve been on hunger strike since Monday and people I’ve been chatting to are amazingly supportive of what we are doing.”
Petra Metzger, 37, hunger striker and fashion lecturer originally from Germany, said: “Hunger striking is powerful because we need to acknowledge that we are vulnerable to the decisions of people in power. We need those people in power to understand their responsibility and step up and act now to address the climate and ecological crisis we are in. We need them.”
La Pethick, 83, hunger striker and grandmother from East Sussex, said:“We are here on our hunger strike surrounded by food. We are jolly lucky to be surrounded by food because children all over the world are not. They don’t go on hunger strike, they just are hungry, so we are doing our bit to help them out by asking party leaders to sign up to our three demands. Which are; please government tell the truth about the climate and ecological emergency, net zero carbon by 2025, and convene a citizens assembly mandated to tell the government the best way forward.”
Beth, 18, hunger striker and student from Manchester University, said:“I’ve been on hunger strike since Sunday night. We have been trying to get each political party to agree to the Extinction Rebellion three demands bill. I was really excited about the election because this is the first time I can vote in the General Election, but then I realised I don’t have anyone to vote for because none of them are going to deal with the climate emergency fast enough. It is so important that the party leaders make the time to speak to us and agree to the 3 Demands Bill.”
On Monday, Green Party leader Jonathan Bartley expressed his support for The Three Demands Bill. He pledged an urgent consultation with party members to discuss support for the bill. A meeting will take place on Monday 2 December.
On Wednesday, Liberal Democrat President Sal Brinton initially spoke with hunger strikers outside the Lib Dem HQ. The hour long meeting with the Liberal Democrats has just been confirmed to take place with Ed Davey, deputy leader, and another member of the party on Monday 25 November.
In Wales, Plaid Cymru, have agreed to an on-camera meeting next week, on Tuesday 26 November.
John McDonnell, Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, quickly exchanged words with rebels on Wednesday and made a soft agreement for a meeting by Saturday but Extinction Rebellion is yet to hear back from Labour on an hour long meeting on camera.
Larch Maxey added: “Yesterday Extinction Rebellion tried to hand a copy of the letter requesting a meeting to discuss to the Three Demands Bill to Nigel Farage, but he ignored us and fled away in his 4 x 4 at speed, so then we tried to hand it to a representative but again we were declined”
Elsewhere the hunger strike is working.
Sweden’s environment minister has agreed to meet with Swedish hunger strikers. In the Netherlands on Wednesday (Nov 20) hunger strikers sat down with officials from the municipality of Wageningen for a recorded meeting to push for tougher action on the climate and ecological crisis.
Six hunger strikers from XR Barcelona have stationed themselves at Palau de la Generalitat, the headquarters of the regional government. In the United States, hunger strikers with XR Washington DC occupied House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office to demand that she stops blocking passage of the climate emergency resolution. Students at Columbia University in New York are demanding the university divests from fossil fuels.
Notes for Editors
Extinction Rebellion UK hunger strikers demand that all UK political parties and Parliamentary Candidates support the Three Demands Bill and do all in their power to ensure it becomes law. The Bill calls for the following:
Tell the truth: Tell the truth by declaring a Climate and Ecological Emergency and do all in their power to communicate the urgency for change, including working with government and other institutions.
Act Now: Promote policies to halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.
Beyond Party Politics: Help the government create and be led by the decisions of a Citizens’ Assembly on climate and ecological justice.
Sign up for Global Hunger Strike here: https://rebellion.earth/event/global-hunger-strike/
A copy of the letter delivered to all UK party leaders can be found here
Draft of the Climate and Ecological Emergency (‘Three Demands’) Bill – https://drive.google.com/file/d/1dXZif0DtyUkwUwQvj6XRQbFY_QwwoIUK/view
Everyone who will participate as a hunger striker will need to fill in a form. The form is mandatory and if a striker is not registered, they will not be considered as part of the Extinction Rebellion Global Hunger Strike. This is for safety reasons.
Furthermore, we are imposing a strict 24 hours limit for participants under 18 to hunger strike for health and safety reasons. For an under 18 to participate they MUST have both medical and parental consent and complete this form.
- The UK XR’s action is inspired by the iconic DREAM walkers’ hunger strike of 2012, an occupation by two young ‘undocumented’ immigrant students of President Barack Obama‘s Denver campaign office. Their hunger strike led to Obama passing the DREAM Act after an 11 year hiatus the Act grants legal status to certain undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children and went to school there. Massive displacement of populations and communities is accelerating in the wake of our global CEE.
- Protesters vow hunger strike to push U.S. on climate change – https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-climate-protests-trfn-idUSKBN1XM2KU
Photo & Film opportunity: For footage of Election Rebels handing the letter to Party Leaders, or to be present for this, please contact:
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About Extinction Rebellion:
Time has almost entirely run out to address the ecological crisis which is upon us, including the 6th mass species extinction, global pollution, and abrupt, runaway climate change. Societal collapse and mass death are seen as inevitable by scientists and other credible voices, with human extinction also a possibility, if rapid action is not taken.
Extinction Rebellion believes it is a citizen’s duty to rebel, using peaceful civil disobedience, when faced with criminal inactivity by their Government.
Extinction Rebellion’s key demands are:
- Government must tell the truth by declaring a climate and ecological emergency, working with other institutions to communicate the urgency for change.
- Government must act now to halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.
- Government must create and be led by the decisions of a Citizens’ Assembly on climate and ecological justice.
What Emergency? | Extinction Rebellion in Numbers |This Is Not A Drill: An Extinction Rebellion Handbook.
- In the UK, come to one of our events, join the Rebellion Network and let us know how you can help out.
- Start a group where you are: in the UK or around the world.
- Find your local group.
- Check out the International XR website, with links to the French, German, Italian and UK websites.
- And while your time and energy are of most importance, if you are financially able to donate money, see our Election Rebellion crowdfunder.
About Rising Up!
Extinction Rebellion emerged from the Rising Up! network, which promotes a fundamental change of our political and economic system to one which maximises well-being and minimises harm. Change needs to be nurtured in a culture of reverence, gratitude and inclusion while the tools of civil disobedience and direct action are used to express our collective power.