Thames Valley Police are asking members of the public to sign up to counter terrorism training in order to help protect the UK.
The award-winning training course, ACT (Action Counters Terrorism) Awareness, was devised by counter terrorism officers and security experts, and was previously only available to staff working in crowded places like shopping centres and entertainment venues.
Now Counter Terrorism Policing has decided to open up the training to anyone who wants to become a Counter Terrorism Citizen so they can learn how to spot the signs of suspicious behaviour and understand what to do in the event of a major incident.
The programme was originally devised in partnership with retail giant Marks and Spencer and participants needed to be signed up by their employers. Today the online learning is available free of charge to anyone who wants to take part.
The decision to offer the training to the public was not made in response to the recent attack in London. However, the tragic events which took place recently, when two people lost their lives to terrorism, were a stark reminder of the ongoing threat and the need for vigilance.
Detective Chief Superintendent Richard List said:
“ACT Awareness e-Learning is especially useful for anyone working in or regularly visiting crowded places.
“We developed each stage alongside industry experts and to date over one and a half million modules have been completed.
“The course has been so popular, with nine out of 10 users saying they would recommend it, we want to open it up to as many people as possible.
“The threat level remains at Substantial – meaning an attack is likely - so giving everyone the chance to be extra eyes and ears for police and local security teams help to keep all communities across the Thames Valley safe.
“The festive period is obviously a very busy one – so this is a good time to join up and become a Counter Terrorism Citizen.”
ACT Awareness is made up of seven modules that take a few minutes each to complete. You can pause and re-join at any time. In total it takes just 45 minutes. Less than an hour of your time could help to prevent an attack or help save lives if one was to happen.
To take the course click here