Recovery, Renewal, Resilience

Lessons for Resilience

Consider developing response plans to COVID-19 that incorporate risk to public safety from extremist behaviour
Crisis planning

Since the start of the pandemic there has reportedly been an increase in extremist narratives from a variety of groups. People (including vulnerable people who have been severely socially or economically impacted by the pandemic) are at risk of extremism which creates future security challenges. Organisations should remain vigilant about new and emerging threats to public safety and develop response plans that incorporate risks of extremist behaviour. Consider:

  • Local assessments of old and new manifestations of local extremism which may have been exacerbated or triggered by the pandemic. Consider the form it takes, (potential) harm caused, and scale of mitigation or response strategies needed
  • Developing interventions for those most susceptible to extremist narratives, this may include new groups e.g. a rise in far right groups, and conspiracy theory groups committing arson on 5G towers as they believe them to be the cause of COVID-19
  • Assessing groups which have become more at risk since COVID-19 and increased public protections measures and support for these groups e.g. East Asian and South East Asian (since COVID, hate crimes towards this group has increased by 21%)
  • Developing COVID-19 cohesion strategy to help bring different communities together to prevent extremist narratives from having significant reach and influence
  • Working with researchers and practitioners to build a better understanding of 'what works' in relation to counter extremism online and offline. This should include consideration of dangerous conspiracy theories, and their classification based on the harm they cause
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