Richmond students plan climate change walk-out

Students at Richmond’s Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) are planning to walk out of campus next week as part of the Global Climate Strike taking place in multiple locations around the world.

The climate change walk-out, hosted by KPU’s Sustainable Agriculture Student Association (SASA), will start at noon in front of the Richmond campus on Friday, Sept. 27.

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And at 12:45 p.m., participants will travel together by Skytrain to join others at the Vancouver Climate Strike, which will be from 1 to 5 p.m. in front of Vancouver City Hall.

“We really want this event to be welcoming for everyone in Richmond and not just KPU,” said Angeli dela Rosa, KPU student and president of the SASA.

The student association believes that “we finally need to treat the climate crisis as a crisis” and “the future isn’t some abstract time down the road; the future is here.”

Meanwhile, Richmond-based Nature’s Path Organic business expects nearly all of its 117 Richmond-based employees to stop work and join the young environmental activists in the strike on the same day.

“We have to work together to bring positive change to our planet and reduce the impact of climate change”, said Jyoti Stephens, Vice-President of Mission and Strategy for Nature’s Path, in a release.

“Our Nature’s Path team members stand in solidarity with the young activists in Vancouver and across the globe participating in the Global Climate Strikes.”  

The Richmond-based business is encouraging all three of their manufacturing plants across North America to “participate in local strikes, as well as rallying other businesses to join them in the walk-out.”

Some Canadian universities have cancelled classes to support the cause, but Vancouver post-secondary institutions will remain open that day.

Alan Davis, KPU president, said that the school supports environmental sustainability and climate justice, and is inspired to see students “giving voice to these matters” as they “seek action on the global climate crisis.”

Davis told the News that KPU will remain open and that it will be “a regular work day for all employees,” adding that “those interested in taking time off to participate in the action can request time off.”

“Faculty, as they always do, will use their own good judgment to adapt to and leverage the action in ways that foster further discussion and engagement.”

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