Advocacy group CAGE has leaked a series of PREVENT counter-terrorism training materials which the government has previously kept secret.
CAGE says it has done this in the interests of transparency and public accountability. It has made the material available here. The material includes:
- A full script of a workshop session.
- Full video clips that accompany sessions.
- Software programs produced by a private sector company educating obligations under the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015.
- A software program produced by the police.
The PREVENT strategy has permeated several aspects of public life in the UK and targets the Muslim community specifically. A growing list of senior public figures have spoken out against PREVENT and over 300 professors, academics, experts and community figures have signed a letter against it.
Freedom of Information requests to gain access to the workshop material have been repeatedly blocked by the Home Office, which prefers to keep the material secret and away from public scrutiny even though some 360,000 public sector workers have already been trained using the information in these manuals.
Ibrahim Mohamoud, CAGE Communications Officer, said: “CAGE has decided to make this information available to the public as a necessary step to allow academics, researchers, campaigners, journalists and students to research and analyse PREVENT training.
“The assumption that public sector workers can be trained in a few hours on a complex issue such as understanding the pathways to politically-motivated violence is naive and dangerous. As CAGE predicted more than a year ago, implementation of PREVENT is leading to over-reporting and several high profile cases of overreach.
“PREVENT only adds to the alienation being fed by anti-Muslim attacks by politicians and right-wing commentators . We call for a return to the rule of law, the implementation of principles of innocent until proven guilty and adherence to due process.”
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He added: “CAGE repeats its call to abolish PREVENT. The safeguarding of civil liberties in an open, fair and equal justice system is the best means to protect all of us against politically-motivated violence. The antidote to violence is a return to a legal order that does not target sections of society as a threat because of their sincerely-held religious beliefs.”