'Biggest scam in human history': Candidate on climate change
AS HUNDREDS of Lismore students get ready to leave their classrooms today to join thousands of Australian children marching for climate change action, The Northern Star has asked each candidate for Lismore what they think of the peaceful protest.
Students will be marching at The Quad in Lismore at 10am as part of the Lismore School Strike 4 Climate.
Politicians across the country have come out in support or opposition of the student strike, here's what the candidates for the Lismore electorate think:
Greg Bennett, independent
Mr Bennett said he doesn't "support the protest action" believing students should be learning instead of striking.
"I don't think we should be involving school students they should be learning numeracy an literacy because that's what we're failing in," he said.
"That's what our teachers should be focussing on."
Paul Collits, Australian Conservatives
Mr Collits has criticised the student protest because he said climate change is "the biggest scam in human history".
"It is seeking to ruin our living standards and our key export industries," he said.
"This is vandalism of the first order, and pathetic virtue signalling. Australia is being priced out of international markets. Climate action is simply a tax on the poor to make the rich feel good about themselves. It is idiocy.
"We aim to return proper learning to our classrooms so that children go to school to develop their critical skills.
"That some of our state schools and their teachers support this nonsense is shameful."
Sue Higginson, The Greens
Ms Higginson said she supports the students and will march alongside them in the Quad before she joins a panel on climate change organised by the students.
"They have 100 per cent of my support," she said.
"The kids are asking for our support and help and I firmly believe we should support them."
Janelle Saffin, Labor
Ms Saffin said she was "happy to support" the strike.
"If the students make a decision that they want us to stand up to take action on climate change, I support that," Ms Saffin said.
"The students who would be going to the rally would be doing it with their parents."
Alison Waters, Animal Justice Party
Marching alongside her 15-year-old daughter, Ms Waters said she "wholeheartedly support students to strike" as part of the global movement.
"Extreme weather events and an unpredictable climate pose challenges for every system and structure of our society," she said.
"Young people know that this is an emergency. I commend them for demanding that governments take real action on climate change.
"The least I can do, as a mother, is stand with the young people in my community who are facing an uncertain and unpredictable future. As an adult, I have an obligation to support young people in this vital campaign."
Austin Curtin, Nationals
Mr Curtin said he was concerned children felt the only way they could be heard is if they strike from school.
"Today's action of kids wagging school is concerning," he said.
"We invest so much into our schools and our education system so that we can give kids a solid education, and it's so important.
"Young people can raise this or any issue with me at any time, over the past 18 months I have visited plenty of schools across the electorate. We've also held meet the candidates forums that were open to the public. It was a perfect opportunity to make their voices heard.
"Everyone will have their own views on what's happening today. My message is simple, if kids want to have their voice heard then come and speak with me, speak with your local representatives - if I'm elected, young people will always part of the conversation."
David Taylor, Sustainable Australia
While Mr Taylor didn't respond to the Northern Star questions about today's march, the Sustainable Australia party does support the event.
Posting to social media, the party states that its Victorian branch will be joining students today in the march in Melbourne.