Students told Hatch reporters Helena Abdou and Fatima Halloum they were protesting for their future and the future of the planet – and rejected suggestions they should not have abandoned their studies to protest over an issue they didn’t understand, as some critics have claimed.
Earlier, federal Minister for Resources Matt Canavan had criticised the student protest in an interview on 2GB – an interview that to many on social media only reinforced the point the protesters were making.
“The best thing you’ll learn about going to a protest is how to join the dole queue,” Mr Canavan said.
“Because that’s what your future life will look like, up in a line asking for a handout, not actually taking charge for your life and getting a real job.”
There were protests on Friday in cities and regional centres nationwide, inspired by the example of 15-year-old Swedish student Greta Thunberg, who boycotted classes in September to raise awareness of climate change.