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Counterterrorism project that assessed children as young as six “raises serious ethical concerns” | UK News

A mental health project led by the counterterrorism police raises “serious ethical concerns,” according to a health charity.

Thousands of people – including adolescents and children as young as six – have been assessed in vulnerability support centers, which are part of the government’s anti-extremist struggle. Prevention program.

Health advocacy group Medact has made a series of Freedom of Information requests in what it calls the “covert” practice, claiming patients referred to the program are being monitored by medical professionals and coerced .

However, police said there was “nothing secret” about the program and maintained that it adhered to “all existing ethical and clinical standards”.

Muslims are 23 times more likely to be referred to centers of “Islamism” than white Britons for “far right” extremism.

Some mental health assessments are conducted in the presence of the police, which, according to a Medact report, is “potentially coercive” and blurs the lines between mental health care and the fight against terrorism.

The information is also used to prosecute convictions and there is evidence that police are pressuring medical professionals, which has led to some patients being detained under the Mental Health Act, according to the report.

In some cases, healthcare professionals are encouraged to monitor patients to ensure that they are taking their medications based on concerns such as “acting in a strange way” or being “converted to Islam”.

Dr Hil Aked, one of the co-authors of the report and head of research at Medact, said: ‚ÄúThis project claims to be about care, but it’s really about helping police bypass confidentiality, while co-opting health workers in missions, including surveillance and criminalization. “

He said police had “tried to keep the project a secret because it was so ethically questionable”, adding that there had been “a complete lack of independent evaluation”.

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Source: news.sky.com
This notice was published: 2021-05-18 22:03:00