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Spotlight on vulnerability to radicalisation in national week of action

Organisations across York and North Yorkshire are working together to highlight the importance of safeguarding people at risk of radicalisation.

Vulnerability to Radicalisation Week is a national campaign to encourage organisations and communities to help prevent people being drawn into terrorism.

Throughout the week, from 26 to 30 September, face-to-face and online sessions are taking place aimed at professionals in local authorities, the police and partner agencies.

In addition, members of the public are being urged to do their bit to understand the risks of radicalisation.

Paul Shevlin, Chair of the Prevent Partnership Board and Chief Executive of Craven District Council, said: “Vulnerability to Radicalisation Week is an opportunity to help raise awareness of how those who are most vulnerable within our communities could be drawn into terrorism.

“The campaign offers numerous resources to inform practitioners how to recognise signs and symbols to help safeguard those being drawn into radicalisation. As Chair of the York and North Yorkshire Prevent Partnership Board, I would like to thank all those partners and individuals who are actively involved in raising awareness and continuing to support those in need.”

Assistant Chief Constable Elliot Foskett, of North Yorkshire Police, said: “It can be hard to know what to do if you’re worried someone close to you is expressing extreme views or hatred, which could lead to them harming themselves or others.

“If that’s the case, I’d urge you to act early, and tell us your concerns in confidence. You won’t be wasting our time and you won’t ruin lives – but you might save them.

“There are some excellent online resources about what you can do if someone close to you is at risk – and Vulnerability to Radicalisation Week is the ideal time to highlight this. Please take a minute to visit the actearly.uk website to find out more.”

Jane Mowat, Chair of York Channel Panel, said: “Knowing how to raise concerns regarding vulnerability to radicalisation is crucial to the success of the Channel Programme. Our panel is happy to be supporting this Vulnerability to Radicalisation week.”

Odette Robson, Head of Safer Communities at North Yorkshire County Council, and Chair of the North Yorkshire Channel Panel, said: “As chair of North Yorkshire’s Channel Panel and the Prevent strategic lead for North Yorkshire County Council, it is great to see partners working together in raising awareness around vulnerability to radicalisation.

“The success of identifying and supporting those vulnerable to radicalisation depends on the strong multi-agency arrangements we have locally – ensuring that we safeguard individuals, families and wider communities.”

If you have a concern that a person may be at risk of radicalisation, or engaged in extremist behaviour, you should follow your organisation’s safeguarding procedures and share your concerns.

Members of the public can also call the ACT Early Support Line on 0800 011 3764, in confidence, and speak to a specially-trained officer. The Support Line is open 9am to 5pm every day.

If you believe a person is in immediate harm or danger, this should be reported to the police via 999.

Prevent is one of the four elements of CONTEST, the Government’s counter-terrorism strategy. For more information about this and Vulnerability to Radicalisation Week events, visit www.nypartnerships.org.uk/prevent