Tag Archives: Extremism

Home Office grants £14 million funding for security at Jewish institutions

The Home Office has granted the Community Security Trust (CST) funding to the tune of £14 million for security measures designed to help keep members of the Jewish community safe in their daily lives. The grant will cover protective security for the next financial year at Jewish institutions such as schools and synagogues.

A charity that monitors and helps to protect against anti-semitism, CST recorded 1,805 anti-semitic incidents in the UK in 2019. This figure represents a 7% increase on the previous year.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said: “Anti-semitic incidents are not just an attack on the Jewish community, but on everyone who believes in a free and open society. This funding will help Jewish people practise their religion and way of life without fear of attack or persecution.”

Baroness Williams, the Minister for Countering Extremism, added: “No-one should feel afraid for practising their religion. We are committed to ensuring our places of worship remain safe spaces for worship, contemplation and reflection. Only by working together can we ensure that hateful behaviour like anti-semitism are eliminated from our society.”

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The grant was introduced in 2015 following a series of terror attacks against Jewish targets across Europe. It has been renewed yearly following security assessments by the Home Office.

The CST’s CEO David Delew explained: “The British Jewish community is deeply grateful for the renewal of Home Office funding for the provision of security officers at Jewish schools and other communal premises facing the continuing threat of terrorism. The CST will continue managing this grant, which alleviates a serious financial security burden from Jewish communities across the country.”

Most of the funding will go towards protective measures for Jewish schools. While the funding period commences on Wednesday 1 April, all synagogues remain closed while schools only remain open for the children of those conducting essential work as part of Government efforts to tackle COVID-19.

In addition to the protective security grant, the Home Office also runs the Places of Worship Scheme, which provides funding to improve physical security for non-Jewish places of worship.

Importantly, the Home Office has recently launched a consultation to see what more can be done by the Government to improve security for faith groups.

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Government sets out new measures designed to tackle extremism in prisons

Governors and prison officers are to be given the training, skills and authority needed to prevent influential extremist prisoners from exerting control and radicalising others. This follows a landmark review published by the Government that examines the risks posed by Islamist extremists in prisons.

Prison officers on the front line will be equipped to crack down on extremist behaviour. They will be supported by a new directorate for Security, Order and Counter-Terrorism specifically responsible for monitoring and dealing with this evolving threat.

Governors have also been instructed to ban extremist literature and remove anyone from Friday prayers who’s promoting anti-British beliefs or other dangerous views.

The most dangerous Islamist extremists will be removed from the general prison population and held in ‘specialist units’ in the high security estate. The creation of these units is one of the recommendations in the review, ordered by the Government last year and led by Ian Acheson.

Elizabeth Truss, the Secretary of State for Justice, said: “Islamist extremism is a danger to society and a threat to public safety. It must be defeated wherever it’s found. I am committed to confronting and countering the spread of this poisonous ideology behind bars. Preventing the most dangerous extremists from radicalising other prisoners is essential to the safe running of our prisons and fundamental to public protection.”

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Key measures to be implemented include:

*creating a new directorate for Security, Order and Counter-Terrorism which will deliver a plan for countering extremism in prisons and probation services

*instructing prison governors to remove extremist literature and putting in place a thorough process for assessing materials of concern

*boosting plans for rapid responses by intervention teams to terrorist-related incidents

*improving extremism prevention training for all prison officers

*strengthening vetting of prison chaplains and a range of positions to make sure the right people are in place in prisons to counter extremist beliefs

The Government is committed to defeating all forms of extremist ideology through its Counter Extremism Strategy, which includes a focus on supporting mainstream voices and building stronger and more cohesive communities.

The Government is also strengthening institutions and supporting individuals at particular risk of radicalisation through the Prevent programme as part of the counter-terrorism strategy (ie CONTEST). Through targeted interventions, the Government will encourage Islamist extremists to disengage, while at the same time closely monitoring and managing the risk presented by those who choose not to do so.

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