More and more families are braving police hostility to join in environmental protests
Activist families: the parents and children protesting against climate change
21st December, 2010
Can families play a frontline role in the fight against climate change? The Ecologist meets the parent-child activists who believe they can
‘Get her down, she’s scared…you’ll be charged with child abuse…we’ll arrest you.’ These threats were directed at Duncan Blinkhorn, a 49 year-old community events co-ordinator from Brighton and his then 11 year-old daughter Maya, as they perched on a fence outside the Radcliffe-On-Soar power station on October 17th 2009 holding a Don’t Burn Our Future banner.
The father and daughter were at a direct action organised by Camp For Climate Action and other groups demanding coal-fired stations be replaced with renewable energy infrastructure. ‘It was my idea to climb the fence so our banner could be seen by the cameras,’ explains Maya, who self-manages her education and wants to be a nurse or vet. ‘I told police I was fine but they wouldn’t listen. They threatened to arrest Duncan. That was scary but it hasn’t stopped me going on other actions. It’s my generation that will be affected by climate change. Having young people at demo’s makes a good point.’
After Radcliffe the Blinkhorn’s were investigated by social services. Footage from the day satisfied social workers Maya wasn’t coerced into...
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