Improving radicalisation prevention in local initiatives

A pilot project by the Polish Platform for Homeland Security

As part of the series of 17 pilot projects, which are implemented as part of the MINDb4ACT project, the Polish Platform for Homeland Security organized two training in preventing radicalization, which took place on 9-10/09/2019 in Poznan.

The PPHS’s pilot project addressed the issue of preventing radicalization and the training were dedicated to “Local Initiatives”. The trainings were conducted as part of the local initiative Threats Observatory for Young People (www.obserwatorium.wlkp.pl/en).

Each day of training was directed to a different group of participants. The first day (9/09) was attended by representatives of local institutions such as the Marshal’s Office, Voivodship Office, Poznan City Council, Poznan County, Police, Prison Service, The Educational Board in Poznan, Municipal Family Assistance Center and Regional Center of Social Policy in Poznan, and others. The second day (10/09) was attended by representatives of education, primarily teachers, psychologists and pedagogues from Wielkopolska’s schools.

In total, approximately 40 people attended the meetings. The trainings were set up as practical workshops, where the participants were involved in the discussion from the beginning of the meeting. They had the opportunity to exchange experiences, to share their insights and to work in groups on a selected case study. The participants of the trainings noticed that in times of rapid spread of the phenomenon of radicalization, taking up this topic and learning the mechanism as well as the methods of prevention is extremely important. Furthermore, a dedicated space for interdisciplinary discussion is necessary.

The participants emphasized several times that the heterogenous composition of the groups participating in the meeting was a huge benefit, because it allowed for a discussion considering various aspects of the phenomenon. In addition, the participants emphasized the competences and experience of the lecturers Dr Marzena Kordaczuk-Was, who has reach experience in counteracting radicalization and is an PPHS’s expert in this area, and attorney at law Jakub Horn, who presented the legal aspects of hate speech.