Entering in its last year of implementation, the R2PRIS – Radicalisation Prevention in Prisons project is reaching some important milestones. Having started with a solid literature review, the project is now finishing a screening tool set that will help prison staff of different levels to detect vulnerable and radicalised inmates. As part of the project’s goals prison staff participated in the first joint staff short-term training in Lisbon during the last week of September, followed by a similar session for Dutch speaking Belgian staff in Brussels in October. The next session is planned for French speaking participants in Belgium on December 7th.
The staff training event in Portugal took place in the historical Lisbon Prison, counting with the presence of around 25 experts (representing 7 jurisdictions from Portugal, Belgium, Switzerland, Romania, Norway, USA and Turkey). Participants were introduced to the use of radicalisation prevention training materials (including the R2PRIS e-learning package for frontline staff); provided informed feedback about specifically developed radicalisation screening and risk assessment tools; shared experiences, discussing cases and intervention strategies. This is their first step to become users and trainers for an effective implementation of the tools in the different prison systems.
The fruitful feedback gathered from the participants was then used to revise the R2PRIS battery of assessment instruments accordingly. The final version encompasses now individual and environmental dimensions that will allow the positioning of inmates and prisons according to its vulnerability level. The ambitious assessment strategy followed in this project presents several advantages when compared to other available measures, namely, the use of radicalisation dimensions that are consolidated in the literature and the fact that it takes into consideration the assessment made by different professionals, at different positions and hierarchical levels in prison, thus respecting the complexity of the phenomenon being analysed.
Radicalisation Prevention in Prisons (R2PRIS) project seeks to reduce radicalisation and extremism inside prisons by enhancing the competences of frontline staff (correctional officers, educational staff and psychologists, social workers) to identify, report and interpret signals of radicalisation and respond appropriately. Bringing together international experts in the field of radicalisation and national prison administrations, R2PRIS project aims to offer an innovative training programme for prison staff on how to recognise and prevent the process of radicalisation inside prisons.
For further info about the R2PRIS project, please visit: www.r2pris.org
With Financial support from the Criminal Justice Programme of the European Commission