Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is now widely recognised, both domestically and internationally, as child abuse and a serious human rights violation. However, it remains a practice shrouded in secrecy and one which all too often has escaped the reaches of the child protection system. It is vital in order to prevent FGM that all relevant professionals have a clear understanding of the socio-cultural reasons for the practice, the factors which may indicate a girl or young woman is at real risk of being forced to undergo FGM and of the effective preventative legal steps that should be taken.
This specialist title, written in close consultation with survivors of FGM and frontline practitioners from across the spectrum of disciplines, provides a comprehensive and readily accessible guide to all of these matters. Set within a human rights framework, this book summarises the key legal developments and debates across international law, family law, immigration and criminal law.
Female Genital Mutilation: Law and Practice is an invaluable guide to this complex and sensitive topic for judges, lawyers, social workers, teachers, midwives, and other related professionals.
- Statistical Overview
- International Legal Framework
- Criminal Offences and Guidance for Police Authorities
- Medicalisation of FGM
- Female Genital Mutilation Protection Order
- Mandatory Reporting
- Public Law Intervention and Safeguarding Responsibilities
- Medical Examinations and Specialist Services
- Immigration and Asylum Issues
- Resources and Useful Contacts
Application for a Female Genital Mutilation Protection Order
National FGM Centre: Assessment of a Case
Female Genital Mutilation and its Management
FGM Safeguarding Pathway
Summary of the OHCHR Report on Human Rights and the Practice of
Female Genital Mutilation and Excision in Guinea
This work was written in close consultation with survivors of female genital mutilation and frontline practitioners from across the spectrum of disciplines. It is intended to summarise the current legal provisions surrounding FGM in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Once clouded behind arguments of cultural relativism, FGM is now widely recognised both domestically and internationally as child abuse and a serious human rights abuse. However, it remains a practice shrouded in secrecy and one which all too often has escaped the reaches of our child protection system.
There has also been criticism that the law itself has been ineffective and inadequate in tackling FGM. Despite the existence over 30 years of a criminal law, there remains no successful prosecution of an offence of FGM. Whilst the Family Court and the High Court have creatively utilised other measures to address FGM, there has historically been no targeted provision to protect those at risk.
In what has been termed by campaigners and survivors as a quiet revolution, recent years have seen a proactive drive towards greater public awareness of the issue and a better frontline understanding of the complexities of FGM.
This has now been accompanied by revised legislation and statutory guidance with the introduction of the Serious Crime Act 2015, offering strong reasons for optimism for both the criminal and civil jurisdictions.
Set within a human rights framework, this book aims to summarise the key legal developments and debates across international law, family law, immigration and criminal law.
It is hoped that it will be of use to judges, advocates, social workers, teachers, midwives, and other professionals as part of the on-going efforts to combat the scourge of FGM and violence against women and young girls.
The law is stated as at 6 March 2017.
The practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) remains widespread across the globe – especially in parts of North Africa – but a substantial number of mutilations are reported to have been undertaken in this jurisdiction.
Accordingly, the risk to girls and young women living in this jurisdiction is not limited to being taken abroad to be subjected to FGM but includes the risk of having the mutilation performed in this country. The adverse physical, emotional and psychological consequences of FGM are invariably severe and life-long.
Many health and social care professionals, politicians and lawyers have worked tirelessly to bring to wider public attention the extent of the practice of FGM and its brutal effects. They have sought effective protection to be provided to the potential victims of this cruel practice. The campaign culminated in the passing of legislation to introduce FGM Protection Orders (FGMPOs) with a statutory regime designed to prevent FGM and afford protection to vulnerable girls and young women.
One of the leading campaigners is Zimran Samuel, the author of this excellent tome. He is one of the country’s foremost legal experts on the practice and prevention of FGM. This book is the culmination of his dedicated work in this field.
The Metropolitan Police have taken a proactive stance in commencing proceedings and seeking FGMPOs in appropriate cases. Their lead is being followed by many police forces and local authorities across the country. It is vital in order to prevent FGM that health and social care professionals, local authorities and law enforcement agencies have a clear understanding of the socio-cultural reasons for the practice of FGM, the factors which may indicate a girl or young woman is at a real risk of being forced to undergo FGM and of the effective legal steps which can and must be taken to prevent the same.
This book provides a comprehensive and readily accessible guide to all of these matters and, most especially, to the legal procedures to be followed to secure
protective court orders. It contains a very helpful list of: (a) medical centres and practitioners who are experts in this field to give forensic clinical opinions, and (b) organisations who have the experience and expertise to undertake educative and preventative work with girls, young women and their families.
I am delighted and honoured to be asked to write the Foreword to this book.
Those who are concerned with girls and young women who are feared to be at risk of being subjected to FGM will undoubtedly find this book to be an invaluable resource tool. I highly commend it to you.
The Honourable Mr Justice Keehan
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