Safeguarding children and young people from the threat of violent extremism

Children and young people may be vulnerable to abuse or exploitation from outside the family.  These threats can take a variety of different forms and can include influences of extremism leading to radicalisation (Working Together, 2018).

 

National Guidance and Strategies

The Governments strategy to reduce the risk to the UK and its interests overseas from terrorism is called the Contest Strategy.  A key strand of this strategy is Prevent which aims to safeguard people from becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism.

All schools and child care providers must have ‘due regard’ to the statutory guidance issued under section 29 of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015.  Section 26 of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 places a duty on a wide range of public facing bodies in the exercise of their functions, to have “due regard” to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.

Prevent seeks to work and intervene with children and young people before any criminal activity has taken place.  It is crucial to recognise that our work in Leeds to protect vulnerable individuals from violent extremism and the threat of radicalisation falls within the safeguarding arena and is no different to safeguarding individuals from a range of other forms of harm and abuse. 

The objectives of prevent are to:

  • Tackle the causes of radicalisation and respond to the ideological challenge of terrorism.
  • Safeguard and support those most at risk of radicalisation through early intervention, identifying them and offering support.
  • Enable those who have already engaged in terrorism to disengage and rehabilitate.

Local support and protocols

As with other safeguarding issues, where a worker has any concerns that a person or their family may be at risk of radicalisation or involvement in terrorism, they should speak with the organisation’s safeguarding lead and the Prevent single point of contact (SPOC) if this is not the same person.   Where it is deemed that there is a risk to an individual in the context of radicalisation to extremist ideology and causes, the individual should be referred to the Channel programme. 

Further support and guidance can be found by contacting the local authority’s Prevent Team:
Tel:  0113 535 0810
Email: prevent@leeds.gov.uk
www.leeds.gov.uk/residents/neighbourhoods-and-community/prevent

The team also deliver a range of training sessions that will develop staff confidence in tackling Prevent related issues. For further information regarding these contact the team on the above number/email. In addition, there are a number of online Prevent training packages:

www.elearning.prevent.homeoffice.gov.uk
http://course.ncalt.com/Channel_General_Awareness/01/index.html

 

Safeguarding children and young people from the threat of violent extremism policy

The document gives more detail on the threat from terrorism; national policy and strategies; definitions and vulnerability factors; local support and protocols; and procedures to follow where there are potential radicalisation concerns and a child or member of staff.

 

Further Information