Extremism and Radicalisation

Protecting children at risk of radicalisation and extremism

The Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 extended the safeguarding responsibilities of multi-agency partners to include the protection of those vulnerable to extremist propaganda and exploitation.

Prevent forms part of the government’s counter terrorism strategy CONTEST and is aimed at stopping people becoming terrorists by challenging the spread of extremist ideology, preventing vulnerable individuals from being drawn in by it and working with a wide range of sectors and institutions where there are risks of radicalisation.

Prevent is not about catching terrorists or spying on communities. It is about identifying people who may be at risk of radicalisation and supporting them to change direction in a way that will help them. Those suspected of being engaged in illegal activity will be managed through the criminal justice system. Prevent operates in a pre-criminal space; working with communities to help them support vulnerable people, build resilience to those who seek to create divisions and put support structures in place to help those who need it. It covers all forms of potential terrorism, such as the far right, Irish republican, Islamic extremism, animal rights and others.

Communities and professionals should remain alert to the risks of extremism and radicalisation, and report any suspicions to the police:

You can also call the national police Prevent advice line 0800 011 3764, in confidence, to share your concerns with specially trained officers.

Documents and referrals