Children targeted by discredited Prevent extremism policy

26th Oct 2018

No Government policy has come under fire as the ill-conceived Prevent extremism programme. Its launch was under Labour and was lauded as an innovative part of the country’s counter-terrorism strategy some 15 years ago. Instead of being abolished, the brash strategy was compounded by the Tories when its remit was broadened during the fateful coalition with the Liberal Democrats in 2011 to include non-violent extremism.

Not only does it involve law enforcement officers, but a statutory duty has now been imposed on teachers, faith leaders, prisons, the probation services, doctors and local authority departments to identify people supposedly at risk of being drawn into extremism.

The policy, which targets Muslims from the cradle to the grave, has many failings and has often been called counterproductive. In 2016, Cage human rights organisation exposed that the use of Extremism Risk Guidance (ERG) 22+ by Prevent was both flawed and unscientific when purportedly looking for clues when assessing whoever is claimed to be at risk of becoming a violent extremist. In a new disturbing report, it warns that the use of the methodology has resulted in officers attempting to remove children from their family, despite being unverifiable.

“The fact that these policies are based on a faulty ‘science’ developed in the form of the ERG22+ is significant, for the courts have institutionalised a theory that has little basis in fact – with devastating results on families and children in particular,” the report warned.

Two years ago, some 140 academics and experts, including Noam Chomsky, signed an open letter protesting against the lack of scrutiny of the scientific evidence underpinning the discredited strategy but to no avail.

Like many other strands of successive governments’ anti-terrorism laws, Prevent has been found to be toxic and must be scrapped. It is based on such false premises and undefined notions of radicalism and extremism that the programme should never have been given the light of day.

Leave a Comment

What is 3 + 2 ?
Please leave these two fields as-is:
IMPORTANT! To be able to proceed, you need to solve the following simple math (so we know that you are a human) :-)

Over 120 people attended a landmark conference on the media reporting of Islam and Muslims. It was held jointly by The Muslim News and Society of Editors in London on September 15.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence event is to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to society. Over 850 people from diverse background, Muslim and non-Muslim, attended the gala dinner.

Latest Tweets