Netpol and other campaign groups are launching a new way to show opposition to the government’s Prevent ‘anti-radicalisation’ strategy
Today, Netpol joined other campaigning organisations, including Campaign Against the Arms Trade and the Islamic Human Rights Commission, to launch a new way for opponents of Prevent, the government’s ‘anti-radicalisation’ programme, to make a public stand against its draconian surveillance methods and the systematic targeting of political dissent, particularly within Muslim communities.
‘Together Against Prevent’ involves a simple statement we hope many organisations can sign up to and a logo that they can place on their websites. At a time when many in the public sector see little option but to participate in Prevent after it became a ‘statutory duty’ over the summer, this enables different groups to demonstrate their open opposition to the flawed assumptions behind this discredited approach to countering terrorism.
Although Netpol has coordinated the launch, this initiative was conceived as a collaborative tactic belonging to everyone who signs up to it. The resources to enable groups to take part are available at togetheragainstprevent.org.
However, if your group would like to have its name added to a list of supporters of ‘Together Against Prevent’, you can do so here.
The ‘Together Against Prevent’ statement reads:
- We recognise and condemn the damage that Prevent’s “spot the potential terrorist” approach has made primarily in stigmatising and criminalising entire Muslim communities, but also to a growing number of political activists and campaigners labelled with ill-defined terms like “non-violent extremist” or “domestic extremist”.
- We view Prevent as a policy that is based on insufficient evidence to support the flawed assumption that ‘extremist’ ideology opposed to subjective ‘British values’ is the single most important cause of terrorism. We therefore support closer collaboration between different campaigning, religious and community organisations to call on the government to end its Prevent strategy.
- We support and encourage more political debate in schools, colleges and universities and reject attempts to close down and censor dissenting voices. We welcome open discussion with all young people about potentially radical ideas and call on all educational institutions to vigorously defend the right to free academic inquiry on issues considered ‘controversial’.
- We pledge to take no Prevent funds and support non-cooperation, wherever possible, with local Prevent programmes.
Netpol’s own ‘Together Against Prevent’ page is at https://netpol.org/campaigns/