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YOU ARE HERE: Skip Navigation LinksEdinburgh Napier Staff Intranet > Service Depts > Governance & Compliance > Governance Services > Risk management > Counter Terrorism & Security Act 2015/ PREVENT

​The University’s ‘Prevent’ Duty

 

UK universities have a statutory duty, along with all other public bodies in the UK, in terms of the Counter-Terrorism & Security Act 2015, ‘to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism’.  The nature of the statutory duty is explained in the Statutory Guidance issued to accompany that Act.

 

The measures that have been taken by the University to address this statutory duty are outlined below and include the steps staff and students should take to raise any concerns that they may have, along with links to further information and online training material.

 

This briefing is also available to download as a printer-friendly single PDF document here

 

Overview

 

Managing the Duty & Raising Concerns

The University has established the University Prevent Group, Convened by the University Secretary, to ensure operational oversight of the University’s statutory duty which it does in reference to a Good Practice Guide​ produced by the Higher Education Prevent Working Group​.

 

Where, in relation to the Counter-Terrorism & Security Act, members of staff and/or students raise concerns regarding the wellbeing of students, or the invitation of potentially controversial speakers, or the staging of potentially controversial events, the University Prevent Group will provide advice and ultimately will make decisions on the University’s behalf.

 

Many members of staff contribute to the provision of welfare and support to students.  In cases where students are experiencing difficulties at university, a range of advice and support is available.  This includes the network of Personal Development Tutors, the Counselling Service, International Student Support Team, Accommodation Officers and ENSA Advice at Edinburgh Napier Students’ Association.  These teams are here to provide advice and guidance to all members of staff who engage with students and you are encouraged to make use of them in providing student support.  Senior staff who have responsibility for student facing services will receive training and briefings in relation to the Prevent duty.

 

Where staff and/or students are concerned about the wellbeing of a student, it is reasonable for you to raise this in confidence with a member of staff whose role is to provide student support as outlined above, in line with the University’s Data Protection Code of Practice.  Should you have concerns regarding sharing personal information, you should take advice from Governance Services.

 

If you have concerns that a member of the University community might be at risk of being drawn into terrorism, you should seek advice from theUniversity Secretary who may discuss the concern with the University Prevent Group (UPG).

 

Specific Measures

 

Staff Training

Senior staff who have responsibility for student facing services will receive briefings in relation to the Prevent duty and attend inter-institutional training events.

 

Other staff, particularly those who engage directly with students through their role, ought to have a general understanding of the statutory duty and the way in which it impacts the University.  It is recommended that staff review the further information and training material listed below:

 
 

Guidance on Understanding Radicalisation

Guidance on Identifying Students at Risk

 

Online training has also been made available from JISC and information on how to access one of these short courses is available here

 

Safety Online

The University has robust policies in place with regards to information security.  The Information Security User Policy has been updated to take account of the statutory Counter Terrorism duty.

 

The University also has a web-filtering tool in place which would prevent both staff and students accessing any websites considered to contain harmful material.

 

Staff and students should note that if they wish to access terrorism-related material as part of a legitimate piece of academic research, they should obtain the relevant approval for the research through the University's Research Integrity Committee, in accordance with the University's Code of Practice on Research Integrity.  Explicit approval must also be sought and obtained from the staff member's academic line manager.  Robust central storage arrangements will also be put in place to ensure that the material is only accessed by the relevant member of academic staff.

 

Please contact Information Services for further guidance and advice on this area. 

 

Guidance on Speakers and Events

The Statutory Guidance requires that institutions have in place policies and procedures for the management of speakers and events.

 

Freedom of speech within the law is fundamental to the work of any Higher Education Institution. Guidance on the management of external speakers and events must recognise the need to ensure freedom of speech within the law, whilst ensuring the wellbeing of students, staff and visitors.

 

All external room bookings are dealt with by the Conference Office within Property & Facilities Services. As part of the booking process, clients are required to read and strictly adhere to the University's Terms and Conditions. If the client anticipates disruption of any kind during their scheduled event, they should inform the University at the time of booking the event. The client would then be required to complete an External Speaker Event Booking Form which would ask them to explicitly list the details of any proposed speakers and the subject matter of their talks.

 

Where the University considers it appropriate, a full risk assessment of the event will be undertaken. If the assessment determines that the University could be put at significant risk by hosting the event or by allowing the speaker exposure, the matter will be referred to the University Secretary in the first instance, who will then liaise with members of the University Prevent Group to determine whether the speaker should be permitted to visit the campus and if so, under what conditions.

 

Any questions on external speakers and/ or room bookings should be directed to the Email IconConference Office in the first instance.

 

Provision of Welfare and Pastoral Care

The University has a duty of care towards its students, and is committed to providing an environment that promotes opportunities to learn and develop as individuals. Effective sources of advice and guidance are available for students should they require help or assistance of any kind.

 

A number of support services are provided by Student Wellbeing however support and advice around housing and accommodation is provided by Property & Facilities Services. Support is also provided by Personal Development Tutors and by ENSA Advice at Edinburgh Napier Students’ Association.

 

Should staff engaged in the provision of these services have concerns that a student may be being drawn into terrorism, they should raise these with the University Secretary who may then discuss the concern with the University Prevent Group (UPG).

 

Information Sharing

Where staff and/or students are concerned about the wellbeing of a student, it is reasonable for you to raise this in confidence with a member of staff whose role is to provide student support as outlined above, in line with the University’s Data Protection Code of Practice.  Should you have concerns regarding sharing personal information, you should take advice from Governance Services.

 

Similarly, an institution may wish to share personal information about a member of the University community with a third party because of concerns regarding the person's wellbeing.  Decisions to share information with a third party will be taken by the University Prevent Group and in line with the University’s Data Protection Code of Practice, having taken advice from Governance Services.

 

Student Unions

The counter-terrorism statutory duty does not apply directly to the University's student union, Edinburgh Napier Students' Association (ENSA), as this is constituted as an independent charitable body.  However, ENSA’s co-operation is important in helping the University address its statutory duty.

 

In particular, the University seeks co-operation from the student union on the following issues:

(i) Management of speakers and events - the University will seek to work in partnership with ENSA in relation to controversial speakers and events taking place on campus in accordance its arrangements for managing speakers and events as detailed above.

(ii) Provision of welfare and pastoral support - the University recognises that ENSA has an important role in providing welfare and pastoral support to students.  Where a member of ENSA staff or elected officer has concerns that a student may be being drawn into terrorism, they are encouraged to raise this concern with the University Secretary, or in his absence, the Assistant Secretary who would refer it to the University Prevent Group for consideration.

(iii) Training - where ENSA staff or elected officers are engaged in the provision of welfare and pastoral support, the University will invite them to engage with relevant training/briefing.

 

Contact Details

Should you have any questions, comments or concerns in relation to any of the above, please contact Maureen Masson, Governance Officer (Risk & Governance) in the first instance.