Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

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Prevent is part of the Government’s Counter Terrorism Strategy known as CONTEST. 

The aim of CONTEST is to reduce the risk to the UK and its interests overseas from terrorism, so that people can go about their lives freely and with confidence. This strategy covers all forms of terrorism.

The CONTEST strategy is based on four key elements:

  • Pursue: to stop terrorist attacks
  • Prevent: to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism
  • Protect: to strengthen our protection against a terrorist attack
  • Prepare: to mitigate the impact of a terrorist attack

The Prevent Strategy aims to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism, and has three key objectives to:

  • prevent people from being drawn into terrorism and ensure that they are given appropriate advice and support;
  • respond to the ideological challenge of terrorism and the threat we face from those who promote it;
  • work with sectors and institutions where there are risks of radicalisation that need to be addressed.


Why Prevent?

The Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 places a duty on local government, criminal justice, education, child care, health and social care and the police to all to have 'due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism'. Under the Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015, all of the listed agencies – including local authorities and the police – need to have an understanding and awareness of what Prevent is, how to recognise signs of radicalisation, how to report and what will happen to the individual concerned.

For more information see:


Where to report a concern or something suspicious

If you have a concern about an individual, where you have noticed that changes in behaviour, emotions, ideologies or beliefs have developed into more extreme views, please report it. We ask you to recognise and consider where an individual could be at risk or vulnerable to radicalisation. Check with that person about changes that you have noticed, ask them are they OK and if you still have concerns, report it. If you have concerns don’t rely on other people to report it, you can either report it to the national confidential Anti-Terrorist Hotline, or if you require further clarification please then contact your local authority lead.

National Anti-Terrorist Hotline: 0800-789-321 

Police: 101

Marc Stephenson, Community Protection Service Manager - Prevent Lead for Stockton: 01642 528439


The Prevent Process

After a referral has been made, a multi-agency meeting is held to discuss the concerns and the current situation that individual is facing. This meeting is known as a Channel Panel and is a process for safeguarding individuals by assessing their vulnerability to being drawn into terrorism.

The Channel process is about looking at early interventions to protect and divert people away from the risk they may face of being drawn into any terrorist-related activity. The assessment stage would look to identify how engaged the person is within terrorist activity and what their intentions may be.

This process would consider what vulnerabilities they may have been exposed to and how they are being exploited and drawn into radicalisation. It is an overt process with active involvement from the individual and their families, where support packages are developed to help the identified individuals.  The group may look to a bespoke specialist or mentor that could be introduced to the individual to provide them with a better understanding and awareness of a particular viewpoint.

To make a Prevent Channel Referral, please complete the Cleveland Police form and email it to [email protected]

Alternatively, please call the Police Prevent Team on 01642 302028 or 01642 301332.


What is the current National Threat Level?

Threat levels are designed to give a broad indication of the likelihood of a terrorist attack. The national definitions for each threat level are detailed below. The current UK threat level for international terrorism is: SUBSTANTIAL.  This means that a terrorist attack is 'highly likely'. It is not set at this level to panic anyone however, it does highlight to us how necessary it is for us to be aware of Prevent, and the need to support and safeguard vulnerable people within our community.

  • LOW means an attack is unlikely.
  • MODERATE means an attack is possible, but not likely
  • SUBSTANTIAL means an attack is a strong possibility
  • SEVERE means an attack is highly likely
  • CRITICAL means an attack is expected imminently


Useful Links


Counter Terrorism Policing (CTP) have collaborated with specialists from the PSHE Association and Girlguiding to take terrorism safety advice into the UK’s classrooms and youth organisations for the first time.

Security experts from CTP have commissioned the creation of an animated core film designed to teach young people how to react if caught up in an a gun or knife terror attack. The film aimed at 11 to 16 year olds will also show them what to do if they see suspicious behavior or a suspicious item.

For further information please refer to the NSPCC website

Supporting children worried about terrorism

Police have issued new guidance to young people about what to do in the event of a terror attack. If you're concerned about how a child is feeling following recent attacks or would like advice on how to talk to your children about terrorism, you can call the NSPCC helpline on 0808 800 5000.

For further information please refer to the NSPCC website