Sandy Boyd, the Trinity High School pupil who is behind the organisation of today’s climate change strike, met with council leaders yesterday at the City Chambers.
Although he has appeared as a deputation on previous occasions he declined to do so this time saying that he found the fact that councillors could have their say but he could not then respond afterwards quite restrictive. He met with the Rt Hon Lord Provost of the City of Edinburgh Frank Ross and Deputy Council Leader Cammy Day and Councillor Ellie Bird. They promised Sandy that they will put the needs of young people at the heart of the council’s climate change strategy in the future.
Cllr Day said: “It was really encouraging to meet Sandy today and we definitely see this as the start of a meaningful dialogue to ensure that young people and their ideas are absolutely at the heart of our plans for a carbon neutral city by 2030. He shared a number of very useful ideas on how we can best communicate with our younger citizens, such as organising meetings outwith school hours and avoiding rigid agendas in favour of inviting participants to set the themes and discussion topics themselves.
“I think we and all our partners, including Police Scotland, fully support the right of residents of all ages to make their voices heard peacefully. I’m looking forward to a positive, safe and good-natured event that will go down in our city’s history books for all the right reasons.”
Cllr Bird is young people’s champion. She said: “We’re working with partners to pull together plans for a major climate conference in Edinburgh in early 2020 and at our meeting today we committed to engage fully with Sandy and his peers so that they’re integral to this event. We’re looking forward to many more opportunities to hear directly from and work closely with the young people of this city. Their voices are critical to any debate about the future of the planet.”