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Understanding Radicalisation in Safeguarding: Importance and Strategies

What is Radicalisation?

Radicalisation is the process of causing individuals to become advocates of radical political or social reform, often involving support for terrorism and violent extremism.

Why is Radicalisation a Concern in Safeguarding?

Radicalisation poses significant risks to adults, children, and young people, potentially leading them to undertake violent activities based on religious or ideological beliefs. Exposure to extremist messages through various channels, including family, religious groups, and online platforms, increases the risk of involvement in criminal activities and exposure to harm.

Prevent Strategy and Duty

The UK government has implemented a Cross-Government strategy called 'Prevent' to deter individuals from becoming terrorists. The Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 imposes a duty on specified authorities to prevent individuals from being drawn into terrorism, known as the Prevent Duty.

Prevent Duty and Safeguarding aim to support individuals in expressing their political and religious views in non-extremist ways. Educational institutions and other bodies covered by the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 are required to have due regard to this duty.

Identifying Radicalisation

Indicators of radicalisation may include identity crises, changes in social behavior, expression of extremist views, and association with known extremists. Personal experiences such as racism, discrimination, or disillusionment with society can contribute to susceptibility to extremist ideologies.

Reporting Concerns

If you suspect that an adult, child, or young person is displaying signs of radicalisation, it is essential to report your concerns in accordance with safeguarding policies and local authority guidance. While holding radical views is not illegal, inciting others to commit illegal acts is considered an offence.