Adrian Cherney

Supporting disengagement and reintegration: Qualitative outcomes from a custody-based counter-radicalisation intervention


The rehabilitation and reintegration of radicalised offenders has become an increasing area of concern internationally. This has led to investment in interventions aimed at the de-radicalisation and disengagement of terrorist/radicalised inmates. However, little is known about the delivery, content and outcomes from such formal interventions. This paper fills this gap by providing results from an evaluation of a disengagement program in the Australian state of New South Wales called PRISM. The Proactive Integrated Support Model (PRISM) is an intervention delivered by Corrective Services NSW aimed at prison inmates who have a conviction for terrorism or have been identified as at risk of radicalisation. Data reported here is part of a larger second evaluation of PRISM and draws on interviews with PRISM staff (N=10) and PRISM clients (i.e., inmates and parolees; N=12). The paper examines outcomes from the intervention in relation to the benefits PRISM clients derived from participation and explores different qualitative dimensions of client progress. The responses of PRISM clients are compared against the observations of program staff who work with these individuals. Results provide lessons for how formal interventions can facilitate disengagement and reintegration. Broader lessons for the delivery and evaluation of CVE interventions are identified. Limitations in the study design are also acknowledged.