Students learn how to protect themselves and others from extremism

East Durham College.
East Durham College.

Young people learned about the dangers of radicalisation and how to help protect vulnerable people at risk of extremism.

East Durham College welcomed the organisation SaferVision who specialise in the subject and delivered presentations to students.

The 45-minute talks were delivered by two former police officers as part of the government’s Prevent counter terrorism strategy.

In particular it focused on the Prevent Duty, which is designed to protect potentially vulnerable young people from being recruited by extremists using the internet and other tools.

Alfie Wilkson, student liaison officer at East Durham College, said: “The talks are aimed at giving East Durham College’s learners a more in-depth and practical knowledge of Prevent, and to provide them with the tools required to identify potential issues and ways to report concerns.”

The talks were led by retired police officers Peter Thompson, who was involved in the development of the Prevent strategy, Sharon Ross.

Sharon said: “Today, the subject of extremism, in all its guises, cannot simply be ignored or wished away.

“We both worked in Prevent Policing for a number of years, and witnessed the effects extremist messages can have on both children and adults.

“This radicalisation can put not only the individual at risk of harm, but the wider community too, causing worry and concern for families and friends too. We believe that through better understanding of the topic, people will feel more confident to discuss matters that concern them and better understand what they can do about it.”