You may have never heard of the Leap Manifesto, but SD8 students are looking to change that. Both Mount Sentinel and L.V. Rogers have pledged their support for the environmental initiative, which counts among its supporters prominent Canadians such as Naomi Klein, Alanis Morissette, Neil Young and Michael Ondaatje.
“We call for a Canada based on caring for each other and the planet, moving swiftly to a post-carbon future, upholding Indigenous rights and pursuing economic justice for all,” reads the manifesto, which has been signed by more than 34,000 people.
Students were given an opportunity to learn about the Leap Manifesto during Mt. Sentinel’s first ever Sustainability Day, and over at L.V. Rogers it inspired students to host a 24-hour sit-in.
“We, Project Beginning, are a student group in Nelson, BC dedicated to creating a youth voice on climate change,” reads a letter from L.V. Rogers’ new environmental group, which hosted February’s 24-hour environmental sit-in.
“It is our belief that the Leap Manifesto provides a structured guideline for the changes that need to be made now.”
And when they met with Principal Tim Huttemann, student Gillian Wiley said put it this way: “We’re the future voters of Canada, so we need to get our word in.”
L.V. Rogers expressed their desire to see a full transition to renewable energies within the next two decades, a stop to non-renewable infrastructure development and better support for high-speed rail and public transit.
“Canada’s rank on the environmental performance index is 24th out of 178, falling below Greece. That is a considerable feat considering Greece’s recent economic troubles,” Mt. Sentinel student Petra Hartley said.
“Our first goal is to get Trudeau’s attention both on us and focused on the environment. We want to see action, whether that means protecting more of Canada’s wildlife and wildlife habitats or stricter regulations around Canada’s carbon footprint.”
Mt. Sentinel sent a banner to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as part of the #WeAreReady campaign.
Grade 12 student Alexandra Ostrikoff believes everyone should be pitching in.
“We are all living on this planet, therefore we all have a right to breath clean air, drink clean water and consume safe food,” she said.“Now is the time for boldness,” wrote Project Beginning. “Now is the time to Leap.”
To see the document visit leapmanifesto.org.