Mobilising marginalised people to help them address climate change
COIN’s aim is to facilitate the process by which people: overcome denial about climate change; act collectively to cut greenhouse gas emissions; and offer democratic legitimacy to elected leaders to negotiate successfully for strong regulation. It is committed to trialing new methods of peer-to-peer communication and action and reporting on what is learnt to assist the wider climate change movement adopt effective strategies derived from evidence-based research.
The project seeks to mobilise marginalised people throughout the UK via communication training within their communities. Courses extend to participants from all backgrounds such as tenant, trade union, community and refugee organisations so their voices can be heard in the debate on policies to overcome climate change. The courses are tailored to meet their needs in ensuring protection of social justice and human rights. Participants in turn become the “trusted voices” in their communities allowing COIN to step back and act only in an advisory capacity.
Refugees: Having consulted with refugees, it was felt that rather than holding a traditional style training workshop, the refugee community would prefer a more interactive event to formulate ideas on the kind of voice they want to have. A meeting across the refugee network was then held, to bring together people interested in pioneering refugee action on climate change.
Participants agreed to hold a Refugee and Migrant Climate Change Forum to explore issues of climate change. The Forum was held at the Amnesty Action Centre in London on 14th October 2009. The event included scientist presentations on climate change, action-oriented discussion workshops and networking opportunities. 90% of attendees said they found the event inspiring and motivating and 84% said they wanted to continue to be involved in the Forum. The discussion workshops demonstrated that participants were keen to start taking action with 40% supporting taking action around policy, lobbying and increased representation while 37% wanted to begin awareness-raising and outreach activities.
COIN has developed and run two bespoke training workshops for the Trade Union movement. These were:
- The Green New Deal: This workshop looks at what a low carbon society means for Trade Unionists. It identifies the opportunities in a transition to a low carbon economy including skill development and job creation.
- Negotiating Climate Change: A workshop for negotiators, branch officials and reps aimed at enabling participants to be one step ahead of the game in negotiating on climate change.
The two courses are now available as part of COIN’s overall training programme. For further information on these courses see:
- Green New Deal: www.coinet.org.uk/training/green-new-deal.
- Climate Change Negotiation: www.coinet.org.uk/training/climate-change-negotiation.
COIN is working with the Tenants and Residents Association of England (TAROE) to publicise a series of training workshops for tenants on climate change and are exploring avenues for mobilising the tenants movement on climate change, in particular by working on a local level with individual tenants groups.
“We have all moved so far on climate change that it now seems we can win if we keep up the good work. APE’s generous grant means that COIN can spread the message via social groups that, according to research, are not yet sufficiently aware of the problems or confident about the solutions.” COIN