NSPCC Campaign For Parents Worried About Children Being 'Radicalised' Aims To Reach Six Million People

'When young people are groomed for extremist purposes, it becomes abuse.'

31/08/2016 00:01

Parents worried about terrorism and child radicalisation will find advice on the wall of their GP’s waiting room, thanks to the NSPCC.

The national charity’s posters will be translated into Arabic, Urdu, Bengali, and Somali as well as being printed in English and Welsh, with the aim of reaching six million people a month.

The posters aim to raise awareness of an NSPCC helpline for parents that was set up after a spate of terrorist attacks and the growing problem of extremists targeting children.

“We have circulated posters around the country to try and reach as many parents as possible, and make the line as accessible as possible,” an NSPCC spokesperson said.

An example of one of the NSPCC posters. 

”The fact that a young person might hold extreme or radical views is not a safeguarding issue in itself,” the spokesperson continued.

“But when young people are groomed for extremist purposes and encouraged to commit acts that could hurt themselves or others, then it becomes abuse.

“That’s why we’ve trained our counsellors to cope with this fresh danger to young people.”

The NSPCC posters will appear in 1,000 surgeries across the country.

Before the helpline was launched, adults could only raise their worries about radicalisation and terrorism through Government agencies, including MI5 and law enforcement agencies.

The NSPCC service now provides a national point of support to parents concerned their children are being radicalised, or who need advice on how to talk about wider concerns related to the impact of terrorism.

The charity’s counsellors have been trained to spot the warning signs of radicalisation, so they can advise adults who are worried about a child being groomed.

If counsellors believe a child is at risk of harm, they will alert appropriate authorities as they would with any other contact where a child’s safety is questioned.

Adults calling the helpline will be offered advice on signs to look out for which may hint at a child being radicalised. These include: 

  • The child isolating themselves from family and friends,
  • Talking as if from a scripted speech’
  • Increased levels of anger’
  • Becoming disrespectful and asking inappropriate questions. 

The charity launched the helpline in July 2016, to deal with an increase in calls from adults worried about the problem after a spate of terrorist attacks.

At the time, Peter Wanless, NSPCC’s CEO said: “We have seen a wave of terrorist attacks in recent weeks and months and both parents and children tell us how frightened they are by what is happening. 

“So it is vital that we are here for parents when they need our support and are able to provide them with non-judgemental advice on issues ranging from the wider terrorist threat to the dangers of radicalisation.”

Adults can ring the free helpline on 0808 800 5000 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

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