Global Hunger Strike Day 8: Extinction Rebellion Hunger Strikers continue into second week, demanding leaders to act now

Email: press@risingup.org.uk

Phone: +44 7969 083 371 / +44 7459 055152

Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Media Assets | New – Crowdfund the #ElectionRebellion

  • Nine Extinction Rebellion activists enter their second week on hunger strike outside party political headquarters in the UK
  • Extinction Rebellion activists around the world continue hunger strike to demand action on the Climate and Ecological Emergency 
  • They highlight the realities we all face in this Emergency including vulnerabilities to food shortages and act in solidarity with those already suffering
  • Extinction Rebellion UK is asking all UK political party leaders to meet with them to support the Three Demands Bill for a one hour filmed meeting
  • Extinction Rebellion is meeting Labour shadow chancellor John McDonnell this morning and Liberal Democrat deputy leader Ed Davy in the afternoon. Filmed one hour meetings with Plaid Cymru leader Adam Price on Tuesday and one of the Green Party co-leaders (Jonathan Bartley or Siân Berry), CEO and Policy Manager next Monday. Conservative and Brexit party are yet to respond
  • This is part of #ElectionRebellion putting the Climate and Ecological Emergency at the top of the agenda for this general election

Extinction Rebellion members continue their Global Climate Hunger Strike into week two, highlighting our current and future food vulnerability as the climate and ecological emergency unravels, and demanding support the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill, known as The Three Demands bill.[1]

Today, nine hunger strikers start day eight outside political party headquarters in London, with others in the US and Ghana. More people are signing up to the Global Climate Hunger Strike every day, some 526 people in 28 countries have joined so far, with 263 people in the UK. Some ended their week long hunger strike at the weekend.[2]

Extinction Rebellion UK is asking all UK political parties and Parliamentary Candidates to support the Three Demands Bill and have requested filmed one hour meetings with party leaders to discuss their support.  The Three Demands Bill calls for the Government to declare an emergency, commit to zero emissions by 2025 and create a Citizens’ Assembly to set out how we achieve this.

The hunger strikers have been successful in confirming meetings. Today John McDonnell, Labour shadow chancellor will meet with the hunger strikers this morning , and Ed Davey, Deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats in the afternoon.  Last Wednesday, Liberal Democrat President Sal Brinton initially spoke with hunger strikers outside the Liberal Deberal democrats headquarters, agreeing a Citizens Assembly should be mandatory.  

Filmed one hour meetings are confirmed with Plaid Cymru leader Adam Price tomorrow and with a Green Party co leader (Jonathan Bartley or Siân Berry), CEO and Policy Manager next Monday. This is a follow up meeting to last Monday when Green Party co leader Jonathan Bartley expressed his support for The Three Demands Bill.

The Conservative Party and Brexit Party have not responded.  

Dr Larch Maxey, a spokesperson for Extinction Rebellion, said: “This UK Climate Hunger Strike will continue until all parties support The Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill. We’re getting closer daily to Extinction Rebellion’s demands being met, leaders are saying they support the Bill and are committing to the Citizens’ Assembly leading Parliament with mandatory powers. These are major steps forward and we need these meetings to ensure their support is rock solid and results in the Bill becoming law.”

Petra, Marco, Monty, Ferhat, Peter, Yves, Jeremy, Steve and Julian enter their second week of hunger strike today and will remain with other Extinction Rebellion activists outside party political headquarters in London.

Petra Metzger, 37, hunger striker and fashion lecturer originally from Germany, said:

I need to teach on Monday but I will continue the hunger strike. We can’t give up, it’s the election in just over two weeks. We must reach the people in power to recognise that all of us are vulnerable. We need to come together as people and work out what we need to do together in this climate and ecological emergency.

Marco, 68, hunger striker and artist living in London: “I am hunger striking as I cannot stand the inaction of the political parties in dealing with the Climate and Ecological Emergency.  The scientific facts are known, everybody understands it is a matter of urgency. The science is ready, the technology is ready, what’s missing is political will.  Time is of the essence. Political leaders need to make decisions now to protect all our futures.

Monty, 61, hunger striker and teacher from London, “I am doing this as a spiritual act to point out the difference of being in the mind and being in the heart where compassion and love reside.  We need to leave the materialistic mind behind and get into the compassionate heart in order to save life on earth and ourselves.

Ferhat Ulusu, 41, hunger striker and freelance photographer, London, said: “As the general election approaches, I can’t stress enough the urgency to stop neglecting our climate and social breakdown. Great Britain has such potential to lead the way in adopting our three demands bill. How about now?

The Global Climate Hunger Strike was initiated by Giovanni Tamacas of Extinction Rebellion US. Giovanni’s mother is from Vietnam and father from El Salvador. Like millions globally, his family are already feeling the devastation of the Emergency.  People have signed up to the hunger strike from Australia, Canada, Argentina, India, Italy, South Africa and more.

In the US, Eric Tien will be continuing his hunger strike until House Speaker Nancy Pelosi meets with the hunger strikers.  Eric said: “My anger has left me and all I’m left with is sadness. The hunger has not left as I imagined it would. It gnaws at my stomach all day and all night with a relentless ache. Yet my hunger for change propels me forward. My suffering is nothing compared to what’s already happening, and is non-existent compared to what our future holds. My beautiful nieces and nephews will have to scramble for their survival run and wonder how we got here.

Hunger strikers with Extinction Rebellion Washington DC occupied House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office last week 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.

Marina, 18, British Mexican in Ghana “I’m going to carry on until leaders tell the truth and start to take this climate crisis seriously, until leaders stop playing with our futures. I’m doing this for all the people whose voices have been silenced, for the indigenous and the people of colour that are living climate change. And I’m doing this for all the youth, for all the 16 and 17 year olds who cannot vote, because I know how frustrating it is to not have a say when it is your life at stake. Let’s stop this climate catastrophe.”

In Israel, Shadi, a Palestinian and citizen of Israel has been on hunger strike for more than two weeks to demand action on the climate and ecological emergency. He said: “I am doing this so all children have a future, including my own five-year-old son. The seriousness of the situation requires using the strongest peaceful tactics available. Hunger strike is one of those tools. I hope the government acts soon.

Sweden’s Environment Minister has agreed to meet with Swedish hunger strikers. In the Netherlands last Wednesday 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 Extinction Rebellion Barcelona stationed themselves at Palau de la Generalitat, the headquarters of the regional government. 

Notes for Editors

[1] 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

[2] Further information on the Hunger Strike:

  • 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: Find photos of hunger strikers from 23 November, 24 November here and for other days search in the relevant day here. (Contact 07969 083 371)

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:

  1. Government must tell the truth by declaring a climate and ecological emergency, working with other institutions to communicate the urgency for change.
  2. Government must act now to halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.
  3. 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.

Get involved:

  • 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.

join the rebellion