What is Prevent?

The threat we face from terrorism is real and the Prevent strategy recognises that we can’t arrest our way out of the problem. The Prevent strategy therefore aims to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism.

The focus of Prevent is on the significant threat posed by international terrorism and those in the UK who are inspired by it. But it is also concerned with reducing threats, risks and vulnerabilities posed by domestic extremists such as those from the far right and far left, extreme animal rights activists and those involved in Northern Irish related terrorism.

Prevent is supported by three objectives:

  • Responding to the ideological challenge of terrorism and the threat we face from those who promote it (ideology);
  • Preventing people from being drawn into terrorism and ensure that they are given appropriate advice and support (individuals); and
  • Working with sectors and institutions where there are risks of radicalisation which we need to address (institutions).

If you suspect it, report it.

For further information please see

HM Government: Revised Prevent Duty Guidance: for England and Wales (16th July 2015)

Department of Education Guidance – Protecting Children from Radicalisation: the prevent duty (1st July 2015)

The National Counter-Terrorism Strategy (CONTEST)

The Government’s counter-terrorism strategy (CONTEST), has four areas of work:

  • Pursue: to stop terrorist attacks;
  • Prevent: to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism;
  • Protect: to strengthen our protection against a terrorist attack; and
  • Prepare: to mitigate the impact of a terrorist attack.

Safeguarding Referrals: Channel and Prevent Case Management

One of the key requirements of the Prevent Duty is that staff know how to identify people at risk of radicalisation or extremism and the safeguarding pathways they should use. If you are concerned that an individual may be at risk of radicalisation, you should treat this as you would any other safeguarding issue; and escalate it using your normal, internal procedures, such as informing your safeguarding lead and/or LADO or by contacting the Prevent team: Prevent@cambs.pnn.police.uk or telephone 01480 422596

If a referral is then made to the Prevent team, and it is determined that there are concerns around radicalisation and violent extremism in relation to the referred individual, they can be supported through Channel.


What is Channel?

Channel is an early intervention multi-agency process designed to safeguard vulnerable people from being drawn into violent extremism and/or terrorism. Channel works in a similar way to other safeguarding partnerships such as case conferences for children in need.

Channel is a pre-criminal process that is designed to support vulnerable people at the earliest possible opportunity, before they become involved in illegal activity.

Who can make a referral to Channel?

Referrals to Channel come from a wide range of partners including education, health, youth offending teams, and social services. When referrals are received, they are screened for suitability by the police and Council Prevent teams. If a referral is considered to be suitable, it will be discussed at the Channel Panel meeting.

How does Channel work?

Each Channel Panel is chaired by a Local Authority and brings together a range of multi-agency partners to collectively assess the risks in relation to an individual and decide whether a support package is needed. The panel may include statutory and non-statutory partners, as well as lead safeguarding professionals.

If the panel feels that an individual who has been referred would benefit from support; a bespoke package of support will be tailored for that individual, based on their particular needs and circumstances.

When an individual is referred to Channel, the referrer (or an appropriate person from the referring institution) will be invited to attend the Channel Panel meeting. Similarly, other professionals who are working with an individual will also be invited to attend. This partnership approach ensures that the people who work most closely with vulnerable individuals, and who best understand their specific needs and risks have a key role to play in developing support packages for them.


If you concerned that a child, young person and/or their parents may hold extremist views or are at risk of being radicalised you have a duty to ensure that they receive support to protect them from being drawn into terrorism.

Prevent is one strand of the government’s counter terrorism strategy focussed on vulnerability and safeguarding.

The aim of Prevent is to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism. It seeks to do this by identifying those individuals who may at some point in their life become vulnerable to supporting violent extremism and by providing effective joined up support across a range of public voluntary and community sector agencies and specialist support.

Prevent seeks to divert people from a path that might otherwise involve them entering the Criminal Justice system. Engagement with Prevent does not result in or rely upon a criminal record.

Safeguarding individuals who might be susceptible to radicalisation

At a national, regional and local level agencies are working together to:

  • Prevent people from becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism.
  • Identify and provide support to individuals who are at risk of being drawn into extremist or terrorist related activity through Channel.

What can put people at risk?

There is no single profile of a terrorist or violent extremist. Factors which may make people more vulnerable include:

Channel assesses the nature and extent of the potential risk to an individual and, where necessary, provides an appropriate support package tailored to their needs. This decision is made by a multi-agency panel with representation from the police, education, health, housing, social care etc.

Early intervention can help to keep our communities safe so if during the course of your work you are concerned about the welfare of an individual you should contact:

  • your organisation’s Safeguarding Lead
  • the Prevent Engagement Team:
    • Email: prevent@cambs.pnn.police.uk
    • Tel: 01480 42 2596

ACT Early

ACT Early provides advice and support around radicalisation, Prevent, and how to seek help. Should you wish to find out more about ACT Early, please visit: www.actearly.uk

Prevent Duty in healthcare