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INSULATE BRITAIN: “WE ARE ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF HISTORY”

17th December 2021, 10:30am

This week in the High Court, the British Government imprisoned one more ordinary person, bringing to ten the number of Insulate Britain supporters it has incarcerated for political reasons. 
 

Dr Diana Warner, 61, who was this week sentenced to four months in prison, joins Dr Ben Buse 36, Ana Heyatawin 58, Louis McKenchnie 20, Roman Paluch 28, Oliver Roc 41, Emma Smart 44, Tim Speers 36, James Thomas 47 and Ben Taylor 27 who are serving sentences of between three and six months.
 

Yes, it's true we breached those injunctions. 174 ordinary people spent seven weeks blocking motorways and making a complete nuisance of ourselves as we put our demands to the British government. Our basic no-brainer demands, supported by the majority of the UK public:  that the government should fully fund and take responsibility for a national programme to insulate all homes, starting with social housing, as the most basic first step to avert the horror of climate breakdown and eliminate fuel poverty.
 

There is plenty of evidence to suggest that a government funded national retrofit programme would create millions of decent jobs and that an insulation first approach is required before the government wastes billions on installing heat pumps. [1]
 

Immediately after the sentences were pronounced, Grant Shapps took to Twitter to brag about imprisoning the backbone of our society: GPs, charity workers, retail staff, clergy and call centre operatives. They are thoughtful, caring people who simply want the government to do its job by protecting the public from fuel poverty and climate breakdown.  

This is not the behaviour of a government determined to do its level best to act on behalf of its people. This shows them to be a gang of bullies who are either heartless or scared and who know they are in the wrong. 
 

When a state starts using private injunctions to imprison ordinary people, without a proper jury trial, they can no longer claim to be upholding democracy.  It is clear, following recent experience from jury trials of supporters of Extinction Rebellion, that the government is using injunctions because it fears that a jury of our peers would not convict us. 

Even the judges appear to be divided on the appropriateness of imprisoning peaceful citizens, as seven of the nine people from Insulate Britain convicted of contempt of court on Wednesday were allowed to walk free. In addition, there has been a marked change in the severity of the sanctions applied for the same offences since the first trial in November. [2] 
 

We think the tide is turning. After the appalling failure of COP26, amid the ongoing horror of climate collapse and the sharp rise in energy prices that will tip millions more into the misery of fuel poverty, we know we are on the right side of history. 

 

Where do you stand? At what point do you say, “if we tolerate this, then our children will be next”? 

 

UPDATE ON EMMA SMART

 

Emma Smart, 44, from Weymouth, Dorset who is serving a four month prison sentence at HMP Bronzefield met with her MP Richard Drax yesterday. Emma ended her 26 day prison hunger strike on Monday after receiving a letter from the MP who wrote to express concern for Emma’s welfare and to ask if he could visit her in prison. Following the meeting, which lasted 45 minutes she said:

 

“We had a positive, honest conversation - not just as a politician and an activist but more importantly as two humans with a shared love of Dorset and our families.

 

“Richard listened to and understood the urgency of the issues I spoke about. He has given me information regarding the government's stance on insulation and asked me to write to him in response to both that information and what we discussed, which I will be doing in the next few days.

 

“I am grateful to him for coming to visit me in person. We have agreed to keep the dialogue open.”


 

ENDS


 

Press contact: 07737 457105  

Email: insulatebritainpress@protonmail.com

 

High quality photos and video footage available here: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1Kucq-NfhnZLGJWwLx1HX03cWR7M9Y2-m


 

Website: https://www.insulatebritain.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/insulatebritain

Twitter: https://twitter.com/insulatelove

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8N5mAeeCLbD-AFUqtPaF0g


 

Notes to Editors

 

[1] About Insulate Britain

 

Insulate Britain is a new campaign group that is calling on the UK government to put in place policy and funding for a national home insulation programme starting with all social housing. 

 

We demand the Prime Minister and the government to #getonwiththejob, face up to their responsibility and lead our country through the climate crisis.

 

We are ordinary British citizens with simple and achievable demands to #INSULATEBRITAIN

 

The UK government must immediately promise to fully fund and take responsibility for the insulation of all social housing in Britain.

 

We demand a national home insulation strategy that gives British people the justice they deserve: a future for our loved ones, lower energy bills and safer living conditions.

 

We are scared: our livelihoods are at risk and the futures of our children are uncertain

The Climate Crisis is a threat to all: we demand the government to act now.

 

Our Demands

1. That the UK government immediately promises to fully fund and take responsibility for the insulation of all social housing in Britain by 2025;

2. That the UK government immediately promises to produce within four months a legally binding national plan to fully fund and take responsibility for the full low-energy and low-carbon whole-house retrofit , with no externalised costs, of all homes in Britain by 2030 as part of a just transition to full decarbonisation of all parts of society and the economy.

Further information about Insulate Britain and our demands here: https://www.insulatebritain.com/

Technical Report on home energy efficiency here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1jt5FI-kinEXoqZtPDrCvnAVQ2EFn8Aea/view

 

Insulate Britain ‘Blue Lights’ policy: our policy is, and has always been to move out of the way for emergency vehicles with ‘blue lights’ on. 

 

[2] Dr. Ben Buse and Biff Whipster have been convicted for the same two incidents (8th and 27th October). Ben has received sentences amounting to 5 months in prison, whereas Biff received sentences totalling three months, but both were suspended.