CAGE has published the PREVENT training DVD for public consumption, thus ensuring government transparency and therefore accountability. The dismal “training” video will turn teachers, for instance, into surveillance specialists fit to discern the “signs of radicalisation” “vulnerable individuals. Note that PREVENT has been heavily influenced and penetrated by GCHQ, which has encouraged “intelligence analysis” as part of the Strategy. Muslims have been discriminatorily bearing the brunt of this policy for many years.
Decades from now, when books are written about Britain’s, dark Stasi-esque era, I envisage a chapter on PREVENT and the accompanying miscarriages of justice. Who knows, perhaps it will be called the “MayCarthy” era after Theresa May the extremist.
A point to note is that some in the DVD may not hold the same views, having being exposed to the PREVENT policy. Jahan Mahmood, for instance, who features in the DVD, has now become a noted critic of the policy and has frequently raised the issue of neocons in power, and their duplicitous policies, both foreign and domestic in public interviews.
(London, UK) A source has leaked crucial elements of the PREVENT training module WRAP to CAGE and now for the first time, and in the interest of greater public debate and scrutiny, CAGE is publishing the material.
The training DVD makes several simplistic assumptions that are empirically untested, ineffective and raises more questions than it seeks to answer. This may increase the likelihood that ‘extremism’ will be over-reported contributing to growing islamophobia.
More than 300,000 public sector workers have already been provided this training and thousands more will be required to attend.
CAGE has previously obtained testimonies from concerned public sector staff that have been required to attend the training.
Despite its wide ranging roll out, there has been a cloak of secrecy surrounding the operations of PREVENT as well as its training. This lack of transparency, and PREVENT’s broad potential to criminalise citizens based on thought, is detrimental for a free and fair society.
CAGE spokesperson, Ibrahim Mohamoud noted the following concerns:
“The DVD makes crude comparisons between extremism and addiction and fails to discuss the causes of politically motivated violence. There is a distinct lack of authentic community voices in the film, making it one-sided and out of touch with reality.”
“This will lead to further religious profiling and overzealous reporting, which work to increase political motivated violence, rather than allowing the open debate and dialogue that counter it.”
“The assumption that a few videos can be used to train public sectors workers in a complex issue such as political motivated violence is naive and dangerous. The Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015, which has made it legally binding for public sector workers to report “extremist” behaviours, combined with this poor training is negatively impacting the very communities that are required to support and help prevent political motivated violence.”
“CAGE calls upon the government to abolish PREVENT; it has failed to deliver of the past 8 years, it is discredited, it is toxic and it is alienating the very community that is key to stopping political motivated violence. Questions need to be asked as to why such large amount of public funds have been invested into a programme that appears to be heavily scripted and built on flawed assumptions?”
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