The Indi Youth Advisory Panel has asked me to deliver this speech also as part of the Raise Our Voice Australia campaign:
Young people in Indi face various barriers to education.
We need more resources, funding, and support.
We need more help.
This is just one of the ways we fear our future is challenged, and Government inaction on climate change is only exacerbating those fears.
During the Black Summer Bushfires, Rhia, at 16 years old, travelled back and forth to school in Mount Beauty wondering if their home would still be standing at the end of the day.
As young people some of our earliest memories surround the impacts of climate change, with extreme temperatures provoking catastrophic weather events.
We are facing yet another summer, scared of a day when the wind is in the wrong direction, or the temperature is one degree too high. We need to reach net zero emissions yesterday.
We need ambitious policies that give us hope!
We are grieving a future that you are dismantling before our eyes. We are angry. We are sick and tired of empty gestures and reckless policy.
You say it is too complex for us to understand, but it is simple: we need policy changes, and we need them now, because we are staring down the barrel of our future.
Mr Deputy Speaker, these are the voices of some young people in my electorate.