(London, UK) The current row over extremism in schools between Theresa May and Michael Gove simply re-affirms that extremism is now the main policy initiative in relation to Muslims across all major political parties says the advocacy group CAGE.
CAGE [1], in a report on the government’s counter-terror policy published in February argued that every stage of a Muslims life is now being impacted by extremism and terrorism policy and debate.
Jahangir Mohammed, co-author of PREVENT: a cradle to grave police state[2], said: ‘The recent media and political hysteria over the so called Trojan horse case in Birmingham simply confirms what our report has said: that Muslim life – from start to finish – is now being routinely regulated and intruded upon by the state. ‘
Mr Mohammed continued: ‘We receive disturbing reports every day about how counter-terrorism policy is impacting negatively on Muslims in all walks of life, including schools, charities and health care providers. Not only does such policy destroy relationships of trust between Muslims and the institutions around them, it is entirely counterproductive.' [3]
Following the fall-out from the controversial Trojan Horse affair, May in a strongly worded letter yesterday urged Gove to make mandatory a voluntary code of practice for schools that was suggested in a report released in December by the Taskforce on Tackling Extremism.
Asim Qureshi, Director of Research at CAGE said: ‘Though a number of senior politicians have created a political storm out of a forged document, the bottom line is that school children are now being used as bait for the imposition of counter-terror policy. This is yet another distressing episode in the criminalisation of Muslims in the UK.’
‘Debates over whether the government should take an approach to terrorism where they "beat back the crocodiles that come close to the boat rather than draining the swamp’" also confirms what CAGE has said for a long time –  that government has no agreed definition of what actually is extremism.’
1. CAGE (formerly known as CagePrisoners) is an independent advocacy organisations that works to empower communities affected by the War on Terror and to highlight abuses of due process. 
2. You can access CAGE: a cradle to grave police state here: http://cageuk.org/report.pdf
3.  CAGE released the first ever testimony of a healthcare professional who has gone through counter-terrorism training. It can be accessed here: https://cage.ngo/article/my-nhs-counter-terrorism-training-session
Contact:         Mr Amandla Thomas-Johnson
Phone:           +(44) 207 377 6700
Email:             press@cageuk.org
Web:               cage.ngo
27 Old Gloucester Street

(NOTE: CAGE represents cases of individuals based on the remit of our work. Supporting a case does not mean we agree with the views or actions of the individual. Content published on CAGE may not reflect the official position of our organisation.)