Agenda item

Prevent & Channel

To receive a three part presentation on the Prevent and Channel agenda:

1) An overview of Prevent, to consider the national overarching strategy;

2) Prevent and Channel at Cheshire East, to consider how the national agenda works locally across Cheshire East; and

3) The Member expectation, to consider how Members can raise awareness of Prevent and Channel in their Community Champion roles.




Clare Little, Home Office Regional Advisor for NW/NE England attended the Committee meeting and provided a joint presentation with officers on the national Prevent strategy. Members received an overview of how this national agenda works locally across Cheshire East and how Elected Members can raise awareness within their communities. Committee Members noted that:

The current national terrorism threat in the United Kingdom was ‘substantial’ which meant that an attack was highly likely. There had been over a dozen terrorist attacks in the UK since 2015 which had led to over 40 fatalities. Since 2017, the Home Office had been able to foil over 30 late-stage terrorist plots. It was highlighted that the financial impact of the attacks on the economy had been significant, with attacks in 2017 costing £137m in direct costs and nearly £2bn in indirect costs.

Sandra Murphy, Head of Adult Safeguarding and Chair of the Prevent Channel Panel in Cheshire East provided the Committee with an overview of the Channel Panel process and also the Dovetail Programme which covered nine Local Authorities in the Northwest. 


Richard Christopherson, Locality Manager (Community Safety), provided some key headlines from the Annual Channel Panel report. Committee Members noted the following:

  • The main referral source came from the education sector (53%), and the age profile of those referrals ranged between 12-43.
  • 86% of the referrals were male.
  • A number of the referrals of young people often had autism and/or mental health conditions.
  • There were an increasing number of referrals from within the Congleton area.


Committee Members were updated on the future of the Dovetail Programme. It was confirmed that the pilot project may come to an end – a formal decision had not yet been made. A decision was expected to be taken by Ministers early in the New Year.

Committee Members were invited to ask questions. Key discussions were noted as follows:

·         Members queried how success would be measured, how much Cheshire East spent on Prevent, and where the funding came from. 


Officers confirmed that the work of Prevent was part of ‘business as usual’ duties under safeguarding procedures. It was confirmed that Cheshire East received £160k annually from the Police and Crime Commissioner Fund to support all priorities through SCEP. Funding for Intervention Providers came directly from the Home Office. There was no other dedicated funding from national Government to Cheshire East for the Prevent programme. It was highlighted that success could be measured through the action and self-assessment plans which were overseen by the Home Office and rated as ‘Good’ overall.

·         Members queried the use of percentage figures, and requested the total number of individuals being referred, rather than percentages.


Officers agreed to provide a written response to all Committee Members.

·         Members queried the overall number of individuals that had accessed support in Cheshire East.


Officers agreed to provide a written response to all Committee Members.

Jill Broomhall, Director of Adult Social Care, provided Committee Members with an overview of the roles and responsibilities of Elected Members in supporting the Prevent programme. Section 26 of the Counterterrorism and Security Act 2015 placed a duty on Local Authorities to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism as part of their day-to-day work.


a)    An update on the Prevent Programme, including the future of the Dovetail Programme be added to the Committee Work Programme. 

b)    The Prevent Annual Report and Self-Assessment to be added to the Committee Work Programme. 

c)    The Prevent and Channel presentation and update be received and noted.


Supporting documents: