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How are we helping young people to avoid radicalisation? Task

Radicalisation is the process by which a person becomes supportive of terrorism and forms of extremism which results in terrorism.  

Extremism is known as the active or vocal resistance to core British values such as democracy, the rule of law, mutual respect, and acceptance of people with different faiths and beliefs.  

Terrorism means the threat or use of serious violence, severe damage to property, risks to public health and/or safety or disruption to an electronic system. The use or threat of the action must be intended to influence the government or to threaten the public with an aim linked to a political, religious, racial or ideological cause.   

Children at risk of radicalisation may display a range of different warning signs or they may hide their views. The behaviour of a child or young person being radicalised may change in the following ways: 

  • Spending more time talking to people with extreme views (online and/or offline) 
  • Spending less time with friends who are not associated with an extremist group 
  • Changing their appearance 
  • Displaying materials or symbols related to an extremist group 
  • Trying to recruit others to join an extremist group 

The Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 includes a duty for specific organisations to help prevent people from being drawn into terrorism, known as the Prevent duty. The specific organisations include schools, registered childcare providers, higher education institutions, local authorities, the police, the prison service, and the NHS.  

For schools and childcare providers, it is vital that staff members are able to spot children who may be at risk of radicalisation. The Prevent duty also explains how schools can help to improve children’s resilience to radicalisation. This includes providing a safe environment to debate controversial topicspromote core British values and challenge extremist views.