Prevent is one strand of the government’s counter-terrorism strategy. It was created by the Labour government in 2003 and its remit was widened by the coalition government in 2011. Prevent is designed to support people at risk of joining extremist groups and carrying out terrorist activities.
The policy and practice have been contentious with numerous organisations independently highlighting how it targets the Muslim community, stifles free speech and lacks an evidence-based approach.
Following many years of presenting these views to the local authority, central government and enforcement agencies, Luton mosques published an open letter to the Chief Executive in November 2016 stating our position on Prevent and requesting an independent review. The letter can be read online or in pdf at Luton Mosques Prevent position letter.
This was supported by a range of faith and community organisations and we continue to refer to these principles in ongoing discussions.