Young Extinction Rebellion protesters to bring Leeds traffic 'to a halt' in Christmas 'anti-consumerism' protest

Members of Extinction Rebellion Youth plan to 'swarm' a series of roads in Leeds city centre against 'excessive advertising and consuming in the Christmas season'.

Wednesday, 11th December 2019, 6:00 am
Updated Wednesday, 11th December 2019, 8:40 am

The group said they would cause 'traffic to grind to a halt' on Sunday December 15.

Swarming tends to involve disrupting traffic for short periods by creating roadblocks.

In a press release, the group, run completely by people aged 12 - 17, said: "With Christmas coming up, it is routine for businesses to have sales, deals and discounts, yet they still come out on the other end with profit.

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Protest group Extinction Rebellion stage a 'die-in' on Briggate in Leeds in July.

"The truth is that it’s not big companies being generous for their regular shoppers, or feeling compassionate to those who can't afford the presents they want for others. It is an advertising scheme to reel in your money, and we all buy into it."

The group said low wages and sweatshops were the result of mass consumerism, and that advertising 'subliminally make it more likely for you to buy from the shops in question'.

They added: "Avoiding this is really easy, and is not only kind on your bank balance, but is moral in not paying into unethical schemes.

"XR youth is part of a wider movement against environmental injustice in society today - we also protest against political ideas which correlate with these issues. For example, as a group completely run by 12-17 year olds, we have recently performed a ‘silent, visual action’ advocating votes at sixteen.

"This current protest though is aiming to increase public awareness of the issues explained above, and to disturb the flow of shoppers in the city centre by blocking traffic for around 5-10 minutes at a time."