Prevent is part of the Government counter-terrorism strategy. It's designed to tackle the problem of terrorism at its roots, preventing people from supporting terrorism or becoming terrorists themselves. It is about supporting individuals who are at risk of radicalisation away from becoming terrorists, or supporting terrorism.
The Government has defined extremism as “vocal or active opposition to fundamental British Values, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs”.
Trying to define terrorism can be difficult and controversial, because so many people and countries see it differently. But any definition usually includes:
They can come from any background, any community, or any religion or belief. They can be young or old, male or female, rich or poor. They believe that violence or terrorism is an acceptable way of changing how others think or behave.
There are many reasons why this may happen. Here are just some:
Those who encourage or get others to commit acts of violent extremism often target vulnerable people who are led into believing that violence or criminality can earn respect, riches or even glory.
However, even though a person may feel angry about something they believe is unfair this does not mean they should attack or threaten any person or any community.
Extremism can take many forms, including political, religious and misogynistic extremism. Some of these may be a bigger threat in our area than others. We will give you the skills to protect yourself from any extremist views you may encounter, now or later in your life.
The internet provides entertainment, connectivity and interaction. You will spend a lot of time on the internet while studying, and they may also use other social media and messaging sites such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, Telegram, Snapchat or WhatsApp.
These can be useful tools but you need to be aware that there are powerful programmes and networks that use these media channels to reach out to young people and can communicate extremist messages.
Young people at risk may display extrovert behaviour, start getting into trouble at College or on the streets and mixing with other children who behave badly, but this is not always the case.
Sometimes those at risk may be encouraged by the people they are in contact with not to draw attention to themselves. Young people may become quieter and more serious about their studies, and may also dress more modestly and mix with a group of people that seems to be better behaved than previous friends.
TV and media
The media provides a view on world affairs. However, this is often a very simple version of events which are in reality very complex. Therefore you may not understand the situation fully or appreciate the dangers involved in the views of some groups.
Radicalisation can be really difficult to spot. Signs that may indicate a young person is being radicalised include:
However, these signs don't necessarily mean they are being radicalised – it may be normal teenage behaviour or a sign that something else is wrong. If you notice any change in a friends behaviour and you're worried, you can call the NSPCC helpline on 0808 800 5000.
Tell someone! Any student can approach any member of staff about Prevent and radicalisation and they will listen to you. The College has procedures in place to investigate and deal with this issue and take them seriously.
If you have concerns about your wellbeing or that of others please share them with any member of staff directly, or click on the 'Send a report' button below to send an anonymous message.