Violent extremism is an evolving phenomenon that continues to dominate the news worldwide. Politicians and concerned citizens around the globe are holding debates to fathom terrorism and ways of counteracting it. A key component in recent years is its recruiting strategies directed at youth which is defined here as youth radicalization, this broadly refers to a process whereby youth adopt radical views and turn them into violent action.
For the past three years, Midaynta Community Services has addressed the need for more communication, dialogue, and deep discussion on youth radicalization among educators, faith leaders, community members, and law enforcement. Midaynta Community Services has responded by holding roundtable discussions across Canada that bring these key stakeholders together.
As a community, we recognize the urgency of tackling this increase. However, implementing policy changes requires significant analysis and dialogue. At Midaynta, we felt the need to gather diverse experts—community faith leaders, law enforcement, academic researchers, and government officials—in one setting to investigate the new and ongoing challenges facing youth in dealing with Radicalization. This aim inspired our second annual conference—Youth Radicalization: New and Emerging Challenges—at the Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto (UT), on November 16–17, 2016.
The conference was organized through the auspices and collaboration of Midaynta Community Services, the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE/UT), the Office of the Consulate General of the United States, the Canadian Council of Imams, and the Mosaic Institute. It brought together policymakers, educators, law enforcement, academics, and women and youth leaders from across North America. It gave us the opportunity to explore the causes of youth Radicalization as well as strategies for preventing young people from joining extremist groups both globally and domestically. To read more about the report please download the report on the link below.