The Prevent Duty
The Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 requires all Universities to have “due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism”. This is known as the Prevent Duty.
There are two documents published by the Government which outline Universities’ obligations under the Prevent Duty.
The first of these is the general Prevent Duty Guidance for England and Wales and the second is a specific document: Prevent Duty Guidance: for higher education institutions in England and Wales.
What is the Salford Approach to Prevent
The University is committed to providing support to all students and staff and it recognises that its duty to prevent anyone at risk from being drawn into terrorism is no different to safeguarding individuals or assisting anyone with any other type of welfare need.
The University does not seek to vilify or discriminate against any part of the University community and is careful to ensure that its approach is fair. An independent equality assessment undertaken last year indicated that the University’s Action plan to implement the Prevent Duty was not discriminatory and did not target specific groups or types of student.
The University’s main focus on Prevent is to emphasise the use of existing University processes providing welfare, support and advice to students or staff. This is not about identifying ‘extremism’ but identifying general behaviour changes that may indicate individuals require many different types of further support.
What to do if you are concerned for a student or staff member?
The University does not expect individual students or members of staff to identify the reasons someone may need support, therefore any concerns should be referred, in the case of students to Wellbeing and Counselling (email: firstname.lastname@example.org, tel: 0161 295 0023) and in the case of staff to HR (email: HRAdvice@salford.ac.uk, tel: 0161 295 2121).
What does a Channel referral mean?
Channel is a multi-agency process which ensures vulnerable people of any faith, ethnicity or background receive support before their vulnerabilities are exploited by people drawing them into harm. Channel is not a criminal matter - it is a multi-agency process to provide support to prevent a person from being drawn into terrorism.
Salford Channel is headed up by the Council Safeguarding Lead. Other members of Channel include social services, NHS, police and education providers.
If there is sufficient evidence of concerns that a student or staff member may be at risk of being radicalised, the University (and not individual students or members) has a legal duty to refer that individual to Channel. The University’s Prevent Task Group would consider information from student or staff welfare concerns before making a decision to refer a person to Channel.
Participation in the Channel process is voluntary, it can’t be forced on an individual and student or staff welfare concerns will always be considered before making a decision to refer a person to Channel.
What else is the University doing to implement the Prevent Duty?
The Prevent Duty imposes a number of other requirements on the University. Most of these were already in place before the Prevent Duty came into force. We must:
- have a risk assessment and an action plan on the duty;
- undertake specific actions relating to IT facilities including specific reference to Prevent in our Acceptable Use Policy, consider the use of web filters and have procedures for students and staff working on sensitive or extremism-related material;
- have policies and procedures in place for the management of events both on campus and events that are University affiliated, funded or branded but which take place off-campus, to ensure that events do not promote extremist views that risk drawing people into terrorism while balancing our legal duties in terms of both ensuring freedom of speech and academic freedom, and also protecting student and staff welfare;
- provide staff training and awareness and overview of welfare referral arrangements (please refer to the Student Support Policy Framework and Staff Occupational Health and Wellbeing webpages);
- engage with other partners including other universities, law enforcement and the Government;
- share information about Prevent across the University, working closely with the Students’ Union (SU) and engage and consult with students on our plans;
- have procedures for sharing information about vulnerable individuals e.g. internally and with relevant external agencies; and
- provide sufficient chaplaincy and pastoral support with policies for the use of faith-related facilities.
How is Prevent managed at the University?
Implementation of the Prevent Duty is overseen by the Director of Legal & Governance who reports on a regular basis to University senior management and to Council. The University also ensures that all members of senior management is aware of the requirements of the Prevent Duty and has also provided briefings to SU sabbatical officers and staff.
The Director of Legal & Governance chairs a Task Group which staff from Legal & Governance, Security, and Student Experience and Support and the Dean of Students also attend to coordinate the University’s approach. The University has invited the Students’ Union President to attend these meetings. The Task Group also considers any potential referral to Channel, fully considering all circumstances and following advice from Wellbeing or HR.
A Prevent Consultation Group was launched in the summer of 2016 with attendees invited from all parts of the University as well as the Students Union. This Group will meet twice a year to consider and discuss the University’s approach to Prevent.
How is Prevent monitored?
Implementation of the Prevent Duty in the HE sector is monitored by HEFCE. Each Higher Education Institution must provide an annual report to HEFCE by 1 December each year stating what it has done over the previous year to ensure that the duty is implemented. Following assessment of this report HEFCE writes back to the University to advise that in its opinion, the University does or does not have due regard to the need to prevent individuals from being drawn into terrorism.
After the submission of its first full annual report, the University of Salford was deemed by HEFCE to have due regard to the need to prevent individuals from being drawn into terrorism.
HEFCE publishes an overview of annual HEI implementation of the Prevent Duty: Implementation of the Prevent duty in the higher education sector in England: 2015-16.
For more information on HEFCE’s work please refer to their webpages: http://www.hefce.ac.uk/reg/prevent/.
Safeguarding Apprentices: Employer Responsibilities
All employers with apprentices should have an awareness of the following:
- The Prevent Duty
- British Values
What is Safeguarding?
Safeguarding relates to the protection of the health and wellbeing of children, young people and vulnerable adults, enabling them to be free from abuse, neglect or exploitation.
We all play a vital role in safeguarding our apprentices and, as such, it is important that employers are aware of how to detect and report a safeguarding issue.
What is Prevent?
The duty to safeguard apprentices from harm extends to preventing them from being drawn into extremism. This forms the statutory ‘Prevent duty’ (s.26 Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015). It is important to note that ‘extremism’ covers a broad spectrum of beliefs which may include far-left, far-right, environmental, Islamist, pro-life etc. Not all extreme views are illegal however, and it is only concerning when someone is at risk of committing violence or criminal activity.
Changes in behaviour, regular appearance or dress may (but not always) indicate a concern. If you are worried about an apprentice, you should always discuss your concerns with Salford University.
Further information and guidance about the Statutory Prevent Duty Guidance along with access to a Prevent e-learning training package can be found via the following address: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/prevent-duty-guidance.
What do I do if I am concerned about an apprentice?
We encourage all employers to NOTICE, CHECK and SHARE.
- Notice: you might notice an apprentice’s behaviour gives you a cause for concern. This may include extreme changes in usual behaviour (or something ‘isn’t quite right’), or you see or hear something that could constitute abuse.
- Check: Question and check your concerns with other core staff members
- Share: Report any genuinely held concerns to the University as soon as possible.
Please note, it is not your role to investigate the concern yourself, but you have a duty to pass the information on.
What do employers need to do?
Employers should have a named contact available to discuss any safeguarding concerns. This individual should:
- Have a foundational understanding of safeguarding and prevent duty
- Understand what to do in the instance of a safeguarding concern
- Be able to report the concern to the university as soon as possible
- Make sure that British Values are actively being promoted across the workplace
For more information around safeguarding, codes of conduct and reporting, please refer to the Salford University Safeguarding Policy.
Safeguarding – Raising a concern
If apprentices identify any concerns, or others raise concerns with them they should inform a Safeguarding Officer immediately. Please note that apprentices must wait until they have made contact with the Safeguarding Officers before returning to their studies or other activities
All Safeguarding concerns should be reported to: Andrew Hartley Principle
0161 295 6428
Dr. Diane Atherton-Blenkiron
0161 295 5077
Our commitment to British Values
The Department for Education have reinforced the need ‘to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation on all schools to promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs’.
Salford University is committed to upholding and actively promoting these values
Respect and Tolerance
Our learners will develop an understanding of respect and tolerance through:
- Our chaplaincy, offering multi-faith events throughout the calendar year, and a purpose built multi-faith centre where students of all faiths and or no faith can equally find space to socialise, pray and reflect.
- Salford Pride, developing understanding and respect for our LGBTQ+ community
- Volunteering, work experience and mentoring programmes
- University Bullying and Harassment Policies
- We have a dedicated Student Inclusion and Diversity Manager, and broader student advice team in AskUs. All staff are also required to complete training on diversity and inclusion
- USSU and AskUs are third party hate crime reporting centres
- Our diverse curriculum
We seek to protect our learner’s individual liberty through:
- University and USSU Safeguarding Policies and Procedures
- Our curriculum
- Access to University support, information and guidance through AskUs and USSU
- Counselling and Welfare team and access to a comprehensive suite of mental health services
Our learners will develop an understanding of democracy through:
- Our Students’ Union, with the opportunity to stand and vote in Sabbatical elections
- Students’ Union General Meetings (UGMs)
- A broad range of optional events and seminars, where students are encouraged to voice and reflect on their own ideas
- Being invited to participate in student surveys
Rule of Law
Our learners will develop a respect for the rule of law through:
- Being required to wear ID badges
- Student Code of Conduct
- Disciplinary procedures and IT protocols
- Lecture and seminar rules