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Brent Council to compile ‘grassroots strategy’ to tackle extremism

PUBLISHED: 16:36 04 October 2016 | UPDATED: 16:40 04 October 2016

Extremism was discussed at Brent's Civic Centre at a Question Time style event (Pic: Dermont Carlin)

Extremism was discussed at Brent's Civic Centre at a Question Time style event (Pic: Dermont Carlin)

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Brent Council is to draw up a grassroots strategy on how to tackle extremism which will include suggestions from the community, it has been revealed.

Cllr Michael Pavey is Brent Councils cabinet member for stronger communities, Cllr Michael Pavey is Brent Councils cabinet member for stronger communities,

Ideas from residents were gathered during a workshop which was held at a special ‘Question Time’ event yesterday.

The first part of the event held at Brent Civic Centre saw a panel made up of Cllr Michael Pavey, Brent Council’s cabinet member for stronger communities, and experts Alex Krasodomski-Jones from leading think tank Demos, Dr Varun Uberoi from Brunel University and Dr Sara Silvestri from City University London.

They answered questions from the community and reflected on issues such as the line between extremism and patriotism, the government’s controversial prevent agenda.

The biggest challenges and barriers to tackling extremism in the borough were also discussed.

The second part of the event was where residents drew up community-led solutions to the issues raised about extremism.

The event, which was chaired by Hassan Mujtaba from the London Tigers youth development charity, was part of the Council’s wider ‘It’s Time to Talk’ campaign which aims to empower residents and community leaders to talk about difficult issues and work together with the authorities to tackle them.

Other subjects such as child sexual exploitation, gang culture, domestic abuse and harmful practices will be discussed at future events.

Cllr Pavey said: “I want to be very clear that last night’s event was only the beginning. We are genuinely passionate, as a council, to work with the community continuously in driving real solutions to issues we face in Brent.

“We know that the council cannot solve this issue alone. We know we cannot patronise young people or tell them what to do. That’s why we need to learn from the community in order to develop long-lasting strategies to tackle extremism in our borough.

“I’m really pleased with how successful the event was in bringing people of all backgrounds together to discuss ideas and solutions, and I look forward to the conversation continuing.”

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