The National Police Chiefs’ Council lead for Prevent, Chief Constable Simon Cole, said:
“Transparency is essential for helping to build trust and understanding in Prevent and Channel, and that’s why the release of this data, with the plan for regular updates in the future, is so important.
“In order for Prevent to be effective, it needs the support of the public, police colleagues and the many public sector workers like education and health professionals who we are asking to help safeguard vulnerable people from radicalisation.
“These figures demonstrate that trust and support is growing. Each of these 7,631 referrals was someone trying to guide a person they had concerns about away from harm and towards the help they may have needed.
“Partners in the police and other public sectors are getting better at identifying appropriate referrals. But if we are to successfully stop vulnerable people from being drawn into violent extremism, then family members, friends and community leaders must come forward sooner to us with their concerns.
“As we have seen, catastrophic damage and suffering can be wreaked when radicalisation is given the chance to infect the vulnerable.
“I hope these statistics give the public faith that when they trust us with their concerns, we act in a thoughtfully and proportionately and vulnerable individuals get the support they need to turn away from a life of criminality and harm.”