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Social work and the government Prevent Agenda

Social Work

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Dr Y Hakak Applications accepted all year round Self-Funded PhD Students Only

About the Project

This proposed research project will explore the implications of the Government’s Prevent agenda and the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 for adult safeguarding or child protection. The Act defined the roles of several authorities, including Education, Health and Social Care in preventing people from being drawn into terrorism. It introduced new concepts, procedures and interventions through which adult safeguarding and child protection takes place when concerns regarding radicalization are raised. In June 2018, the government published its CONTEST 2018 strategy document that reaffirms, continues and develops the direction of Prevent. The 2015 Act had implications for many thousands of employees, service users and carers in the public, private and third sectors (HO, 2018). These dramatic changes were only evaluated internally by the Home Office and the evaluations were never published. While there is a growing number of publications which are critical of the Government’s Prevent agenda, only few are based on empirical data, and none of them on data relating specifically to adults.

These facts highlight the urgent need for empirical data about the intended and the unintended consequences of the Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 on adult safeguarding in the UK, as well as its wider social and ethical implications.

To collect such empirical data, the proposed project is likely to be based on mixed methods and will include a survey, semi-structured interviews, participant observations and case studies. This details of the proposal will be finalized with the PhD applicant. The project has the following aims:

In relation to social care and health professionals involved in adult safeguarding:
To ascertain how confident these professionals feel about their understanding of their duties under the 2015 Act and about their ability to comply with these duties
To discover how motivated they are to comply with these duties
To explore their perception and understanding of radicalization and their confidence in discussing with service users their religious and non-religious beliefs, values and culture
To examine professionals’ perception and understanding of the Government’s Prevent agenda and its current implementation
To explore the language, processes, procedures and systems involved in implementing the Prevent Duty
To examine case studies of service users through which we will also gain service users’ perspectives
To draw on the findings to provide recommendations for policy and practice

Funding Notes

Brunel offers a number of funding options to research students that help cover the cost of their tuition fees, contribute to living expenses or both. See more information here: Recently the UK Government made available the Doctoral Student Loans of up to £25,000 for UK and EU students and there is some funding available through the Research Councils. Many of our international students benefit from funding provided by their governments or employers. Brunel alumni enjoy tuition fee discounts of 15%.)
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