|Efua Dorkenoo, OBE & Jane Ellison MP in UK House of Commons, 2011.|
“Professionals are crying out for clear cut guidance on referral pathways on early identification of girls potentially at risk and prevention; and protocols for documenting and sharing information on FGM between health, children's social care, education and the police.
There is no time to waste on platitudes as thousands of girls living in England and Wales are having their life blighted by this damaging practice.”
--Efua Dorkenoo (1949-2014), pioneering anti-FGM activist & Equality Now Senior Advisor
According to estimated prevalence data published by Equality Now and the City University London in July 2015, approximately 137,000 women and girls are living with the consequences of female genital mutilation (FGM) in England and Wales. In addition, 60,000 English and Welsh girls were born to mothers who have undergone FGM. Though FGM has been illegal in the UK since 1985, it wasn’t until 2014 that the crime was first prosecuted.
Equality Now is a key player in developing a coordinated ‘joined-up’ approach, which breaks down the barriers relating to both prevention and prosecution for the crime of FGM. Supported by the December 2012 UN Global Ban on FGM, Equality Now is committed to the implementation of systems to comprehensively educate parents, law enforcement professionals, medical professionals, educators, social workers and anyone in regular contact with children, on their obligations to safeguard children from this severe form of violence.
Successes of the ‘Joined-Up’ Approach to Prevention and Prosecution of FGM in the UK
Raising Awareness of FGM in the UK
Equality Now is a source of information on FGM for various groups. It provided key analysis for the UK section of a report which seeks to map both the current situation and recent trends of the prevalence of FGM in the EU. It also contributed to the Trust Law Special Coverage on FGM, the Department for International Development’s Special Initiative on FGM and the UK-wide Special Community Initiative on FGM, which operates at a grassroots level and which was established and funded by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, Trust for London and Rosa, the UK’s Women’s Fund.
Equality Now holds consultative status with the United Nations ECOSOC and brings over 20 years of expertise from working on this issue at a global level. To take action on our current campaigns, please click here.