Prevent Watch

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An upcoming review of the Prevent counter-extremism programme is at risk of becoming a “whitewash”

A coalition of 10 human rights and community groups, including Index on Censorship, have warned that an upcoming review of the Prevent counter-extremism programme is at risk of becoming a “whitewash”. The groups are urging the government to ensure that the review of Prevent is comprehensive and truly independent. Dear Rt. Hon Brandon Lewis, We write as a diverse coalition of human rights organisations and community groups concerned by the impact of the Government’s flagship counter-extremism strategy, Prevent, on fundamental rights, community cohesion and the delivery of public services. We welcome the Government’s commitment to establishing an independent review of Prevent under the auspices of the Counter Terror and Border Security Act 2019. [1] As the deadline for the announcement of arrangements for the Review approaches, we are writing to request that you take appropriate steps to ensure that it is genuinely independent of Government and that its Terms of […]

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Government warned that review of Prevent risks becoming a “whitewash”

The Government has been warned that a review of its counter-extremism strategy, Prevent, is at risk of becoming a “whitewash.” [1] In January, the Government announced an ‘independent review’ after years of rejecting concerns from a range of people and organisations on the impact of the Prevent strategy. Many groups have criticised, opposed, and called for the repeal of the Prevent strategy. These groups include the National Union of Students (NUS), Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS), University and College Union (UCU), National Union of Teachers (NUT), several faith groups, academics, and activists. [2] A coalition of 10 human rights organisations and community groups have accused the Government of recruiting the ‘independent’ reviewer behind closed doors. The coalition consists of groups including Rights Watch, Liberty, Index on Censorship, CAGE, and the Muslim Council of Britain. Read more

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Review of Prevent counter-extremism scheme risks becoming ‘whitewash’, government warned

A review of the controversial Prevent counter-extremism programme is at risk of becoming a “whitewash”, the government has been warned. The Home Office announced an assessment of the scheme in January, after years of dismissing human rights concerns and resisting persistent calls to overhaul it. In a letter to the new security minister Brandon Lewis seen exclusively by The Independent, a coalition of 10 human rights and community groups accused the government of recruiting an “independent reviewer of Prevent” behind closed doors. Ministers told parliament the appointment, which is to be announced on Monday, was not advertised publicly because of time pressures and a suitable candidate would be chosen by the home secretary. Read more