Extremism and radicalisation are safeguarding issues for children and young people. They can involve estrangement from key support networks, involvement with criminal groups, imprisonment and physical danger. Indicators of vulnerability of children and young people to radicalisation may include:
- discomfort about their place in society;
- low self-esteem;
- involvement with a new and different group of friends – sometimes older;
- accessing or possessing extremist literature;
- accessing violent extremist websites, especially those with a social networking element;
- rejection of civic life.
Prevent and Channel
What is Prevent?
Prevent is a strand of the Government’s Counter Terrorism Strategy (CONTEST). It is about ensuring we all work together to ‘prevent’ children, young people and adults from being drawn into extremist activity, including acts of terrorism. It is about everyone taking responsibility and knowing what to do if they have concerns. The Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015, contains a duty on specific authorities known as the Prevent Duty which commenced in July 2015.
What is Channel?
Channel is a multi-agency safeguarding programme run in every Local Authority in England and Wales. It works to support vulnerable people from being drawn into terrorism and provides a range of support such as mentoring, counselling, assistance with employment etc. Channel is about early intervention to protect vulnerable people from being drawn into committing terrorist-related actviity and addresses all types of extremism. Participation in Channel is voluntary. It is up to an individual, or their parents for children aged 17 years and under, to decide whether to take up the support it offers. Channel does not lead to a criminal record.
Referrals made in relation to safeguarding concerns for children and young people that may be at risk of radicalisation are made in the same way as other safeguarding issues. If there is a risk of immediate harm or danger to a child or young person, you should contact the Police via 999 or the Police Anti-Terrorist Hotline via 0800 789 321.
TriX have published the following useful resources:
- Briefing No. 162 Radicalisation and Extremism – Decision Making & Safeguarding
- Factsheet – Radicalisation and Extremism
- The Prevent Duty – Departmental advice for schools and childcare providers, DfE, June 2015
- Revised Prevent Duty Guidance for England and Wales, HM Government, April 2019
- Prevent Duty Guidance: for further education institutions in England and Wales, HM Government, April 2019
- Prevent Duty Guidance: for higher education institutions in England and Wales, HM Government, April 2019
- How social media is used to encourage travel to Syria and Iraq – Briefing Note for Schools, Home Office and DfE, July 2015
- Home Office Prevent eLearning Module
To assist implementation of the duty in section 26 of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015, a Prevent e-learning training package is available. This is introductory training. It provides a foundation on which to develop further knowledge around the risks of radicalisation and the roles involved in supporting those at risk.
The LSCB Training Programme also includes WRAP (Workshop to Raise Awareness of Prevent) dates. WRAP was developed by the Home Office aimed at frontline staff across agencies working with children and young people e.g. social care, police, probation, education and health. The purpose is to raise awareness of the risk associated with the targeting of vulnerable individuals by extremists. It is a key awareness tool for frontline staff to support carrying out effective safeguarding duties and to understand their responsibility under the Prevent Duty.
The Redbridge Prevent Support Officer comes out to Schools to deliver WRAP training to staff and can be contacted via 020 8708 5230.
The Prevent Co-ordinator for Redbridge is based in LBR Community Safety and can be contacted via firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 8708 5971.