Campaign suggests lowering voting age to eight would ensure climate change is a top priority for voters in October’s federal election
VANCOUVER – Lowering the voting age from 18 to eight would make the climate emergency a top priority in the upcoming federal election, according to the 18to8 campaign.
Launched by the David Suzuki Foundation, the satirical campaign suggests that because today’s children will be most affected by climate change, they are more aware of its scope and the urgency with which governments and citizens must act on solutions.
“Think lowering the voting age is crazy? Doing nothing is crazier,” reads the campaign website. The campaign video includes scenes of kids organizing protests from ‘campaign headquarters,’ messages of support from several Canadian celebrities and a campaign jingle sung by Juno award–winning musician Dan Mangan.
“By suggesting eight-year-olds would vote with more wisdom than adults when it comes to prioritizing climate change, we are trying to playfully show that many adults simply are not giving climate change the attention it demands right now,” David Suzuki Foundation CEO Stephen Cornish said.
According to Abacus Data research, 42 per cent of Canadians see climate change as a national emergency, with 81 per cent agreeing that it represents a “major threat to the future of our children and grandchildren.” However, Canadians only rank it as the number 2 issue in Canada, following cost of living.
“We aren’t suggesting eight-year-olds should really get vote, but we are suggesting that adults vote with the best interests of future generations in mind this October,” Cornish said. “Youth in Canada and around the world are speaking up, petitioning and organizing strikes to prioritize the climate crisis. Adults have the power to make changes. It’s time we listen to the young people.”
The campaign website asks people to sign a pledge to prioritize climate action when they cast their votes in the October 21 federal election.
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