The new Prevent Duty, which came into force for universities in September 2015 as part of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015, places legal requirements on the University to minimise the risk of individuals being drawn into terrorism and to ensure vulnerable individuals receive timely and appropriate support. The University therefore needs to be able to demonstrate that we have appropriate processes and policies in place to comply with the Duty.
The University of Nottingham's approach
The Prevent agenda is not new and the University has closely followed published guidance for many years. As such, we are in a strong position to respond to the latest Duty.
The University will continue its approach to manage Prevent as part of its welfare and safeguarding activities. We are committed to maintaining an inclusive and supportive environment where all members of the University community are encouraged to engage in debate and to pursue both academic and non-academic interests. At the heart of this, we will continue to encourage a culture whereby all members of the University community feel involved and socially included in University life and support others to do the same. We consider this the most effective means of reducing the likelihood of individuals becoming isolated and vulnerable.
Prevent Duty Guidance
The statutory guidance for higher education institutions highlights key areas of attention. These are:
Partnerships with other local organisations engaged with Prevent;
Risk assessment and action plan;
Welfare and pastoral care/chaplaincy support;
Students' Union and societies.
The full guidance is available here for those who are interested to understand further.
Compliance with the Duty
The University has updated several key policies in light of the latest guidance:
The area of greatest change is the updated Code of Practice on Meetings and Other Activities on University Premises which relates to external speaker events. Staff, particularly those who arrange events, should familiarise themselves with the procedure.
IT Policies and Research Policies
The Code of Practice for Users of the University Computing Facilities sets out expectations on reasonable use of IT facilities.
The Code of Research Conduct and Research Ethics sets out processes relating to sensitive research and is in the process of being updated in line with the Prevent guidance.
Support with the Duty
The University has a wealth of support services available for staff and students, whether they are anxious about the impact of the Duty on themselves or if they have welfare concerns about others within the University.
The following policies are designed to ensure an inclusive and supportive community:
Equality and Diversity
Dignity at Nottingham Policy
Data Protection Policy
The following guidance and support services are also available:
Guide for Staff on Identifying and Responding to Students in Difficulty
Any non-urgent concerns regarding an individual's welfare should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
All emergency welfare concerns should be directed to the Security Office at extension 18888. Under no circumstances should matters be referred outside the University without initial discussion with the Security Office.
Queries regarding the Prevent Duty should be directed to Paul Greatrix, Registrar, at email@example.com.