There have been numerous reports in the press lately suggesting that the delays to the publication of the Prevent Review by Sir William Shawcross hinges on whether groups and individuals should be named who have tried to undermine Prevent, taken monies and then been supportive of extremist groups or who have been quietly obstructive of the counter-extremism community based programme.
Whatever the reasons, the delay to the publication of the report gives the impression to those working in this area and to the wider public that the Government is not wholly focused on this area of work, is willing to play politics with such a key part of our collective safety and also somehow scared of calling out individuals and groups.
We are not interested in the debate about whether groups should be called out or not. If individuals or groups do support extremist groups and have received public monies, it is the job of the Government to seek redress or to seek to recoup the public monies in the public interest. That is the job of Government and one would hope that these actions would have been taken quickly.
What is of concern to us, is that a report is being withheld that has national significance, gives some direction to this programme of work and which also provides the public with a sense that the review has been thoroughly intense and looked at all areas of Prevent.
This is why we firmly believe that the Government must publish the review now. It has been delayed for over 4 months and delays simply make the review redundant over time. The time for politicking is over, publish the review.