A radically different strategy to prevent people being drawn into terrorism was unveiled today by the Home Secretary.
The new Prevent programme will:
- deal with all forms of terrorism and target not just violent extremism but also non-violent extremism, which can create an atmosphere conducive to terrorism and can popularise views which terrorists exploit
- ensure government funding and support cannot reach organisations with extremist views who do not support mainstream British values
- challenge the ideology that supports terrorism and those who promote it
- support sectors and institutions, including universities and prisons, where there are risks of radicalisation
- draw on existing successful programmes to protect vulnerable individuals from being drawn into terrorism
- crucially, all new programmes will be evaluated rigorously to ensure effectiveness and value for money
Theresa May said: ‘Prevent is an integral part of our counter-terrorism strategy and aims to stop people from becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism.
‘Our new Prevent strategy will challenge extremist ideology, help protect institutions from extremists, and tackle the radicalisation of vulnerable people. And we will not fund or work with organisations that do not subscribe to the core values of our society.
‘Above all, it will tackle the threat from home-grown terrorism.’
The new strategy was published alongside a detailed review of past Prevent work and an assessment of the extent and causes of radicalisation in this country and overseas.
The new strategy will see:
- a greater effort to tackle extremist ideologies, including work with mainstream individuals to make sure moderate voices are heard
- tough action to exclude foreign hate preachers
- work to tackle terrorist use of the internet for radicalisation, including the filtering of unlawful content by public bodies such as schools and libraries; and work with industry and international partners to crack down on unlawful content hosted in the UK and overseas
- action to build upon the success of the multi-agency Channel programme, which identifies and supports people at risk of radicalisation
- work with schools, including a more effective inspection regime to ensure that extremists are not participating in the education of young people
- greater support for universities and colleges, training staff to recognise the signs of radicalisation and improving awareness of help available to them
- renewed efforts in prisons to stop people becoming radicalised and to de-radicalise those who have been involved in extremism before being jailed
- extra support, where appropriate, to help faith organisations reach people vulnerable to radicalisation
- closer work with the Charity Commission to investigate allegations of terrorist activity or links
The budget for Prevent in 2011-12 will be £46million - £36million from the Home Office and £10million from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
Lord Carlile, the independent reviewer of the Prevent review, said: ‘This new Prevent strategy has my full support. It provides a template for challenging the extremist ideas and terrorist actions which seek to undermine the rule of law and fundamental British political values and institutions.
‘Its tone is clear, and its policy compelling. It offers a positive message for mutual respect, tolerance and liberty.’