Extremism Advice Alarms Academics

October 20, 2006

Source: BBC News


A lecturers' union is warning of an "anti-Muslim McCarthyism" after reports that university staff are to be encouraged to inform on students.

A leaked report suggested government guidelines for universities on tackling extremism would encourage staff to inform on students to Special Branch.

Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly denied it was about "picking on" individual students.

She said that the guidelines were still being worked out, in discussion with universities, and it was important to "strike the right balance".

The University and College Union (UCU) said it had several concerns. One was that the guidance could be seen as stifling debate, another was that there was a danger of "demonising Muslims".