Reclaim the Power activists stood on mining equipment at an open cast coal mine, their banner reads Leeds Reclaim the Power.
Reclaim the Power activists protesting at a mine. Image credit via Break Free From Fossil Fuels, Creative Commons.

Reclaim the Power, a UK based environmental group, has found itself unceremoniously suspended from social media site Twitter. Six weeks ago, the group found themselves unable to post from their account, with members of the public unable to view its content. The group claims they have received no explanation as to why the account was suspended, nor did they received an email to notify them of the suspension.

After activists within Reclaim the Power broke the news to the public today, the account has been unsuspended by Twitter. Reclaim the Power say they have received no explanation as to why this six week suspension occured, nor how to stop it happening again in future. Discussing the six week suspension of the account, Ellie an organiser from Reclaim the Power said:

‘During this pandemic – while offline protest is largely off-limits – social media is crucial for ordinary people to be able to speak out and take action together. We are a network fighting for climate justice, for migrant justice, and against an economic system that puts profits before people’s wellbeing.

As a grassroots, volunteer network run on a shoestring budget, Reclaim the Power relies on platforms like Twitter to make our voice heard. By suspending our account without notification or warning, Twitter have taken that voice away.’

Formed in 2012, Reclaim the Power describes itself as ‘a UK based direct action network fighting for social, environmental and economic justice.’ The group gained prominence through acts of nonviolent direct action against fossil fuel extraction sites and organising regular camps to discuss climate and social justice issues.

Most recently in 2019, the group held ‘Power Beyond Borders’, a camp where activists learned about targeting both new gas infrastructure and the hostile environment policy. As a result, activists staged actions blocking coaches used in deportations and the entrance to a gas site under construction.

The suspension of Reclaim the Power’s account reflects a recent rise in social media giants suspending the accounts of environmental justice organisers. Facebook was recently criticised for suspending the pages and accounts of activists organising in support of the Wet’suwet’en struggle against the Coastal Gas Link Pipeline in Canada.

Twitter have been contacted for comment.