Bishop of St Albans asks Government about counter-extremism policy

On 17th & 20th September 2018 the Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, received written answers from Government to three questions on countering extremism policy:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans:

(i) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the joint statement published by Prevent Watch on 27 July about the Commission for Countering Extremism’s “evidence drive”; and how they intend to respond to the concerns raised in the statement.

(ii) To ask Her Majesty’s Government what weight will be given to academic evidence reviewed as part of the Commission for Countering Extremism’s evidence drive compared to evidence from other sources.

(iii) To ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they will conduct an independent review of how the Prevent programme is currently operating before placing any additional responsibilities on local authorities as recommended by the Joint Committee on Human Rights in its report, Counter-Extremism, published on 20 July 2016 (HL Paper 39), and since; and if not, why not.

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Bishop of St Albans expresses concern about rollout of Prevent Strategy

St Albans 2On 20th December 2016, Baroness Hussein-Ece asked the Government “how they are assessing and evaluating the success of the Prevent Strategy deradicalisation programme following the referral of approximately 4,000 people last year”. The Bishop of St Albans, the Rt Revd Alan Smith, asked a follow up question:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans My Lords, a group of Christian leaders in Luton in my diocese are working closely with people of other faiths on the Prevent strategy. I have to say that I hear a very different narrative from the grass roots which is profoundly worrying. There is growing discontent at the rollout of the Prevent strategy due to a number of things such as religious illiteracy and some very heavy-handed actions. Would the Minister be willing to come and meet a group of leaders to hear about these concerns? These are people who want to try to make this work so that we can think about how to get it back on course and improve the situation. Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans expresses concern about rollout of Prevent Strategy”