UK: FORWARD Welcomes The House Of Lords' Renewed Interest

FORWARD welcomes the House of Lords' renewed interest in FGM. Baroness Rendell of Babergh's question today in the House of Lords regarding routine disclosure by health professionals when evidence of female genital mutilation (FGM) is discovered in patients, is a step in the right direction.

In 2007, Baroness Gould of Potternewton hosted the launch of the report "A Statistical Study to Estimate the Prevalence of Female Genital Mutilation in England and Wales" which estimated that over 20,000 girls under the age of 15 are potentially at risk of FGM in England and Wales. The report which was funded by the Department of Health recommends that a survey should be undertaken to provide more reliable data on the prevalence of FGM in England and Wales to support planning and implementation of a comprehensive national strategy for the prevention and elimination of FGM in the UK.

Naana Otoo-Oyortey, Executive Director, FORWARD draws attention to the government's own recommendations:

"It is time for the government to demonstrate its commitment to tackling FGM in the UK. Equal attention should be given to the implementation of all the recommendations of the All Party Parliamentary hearings on FGM held in 2000, in particular education, grass roots community organisations, health and research, and not just legislation."

FORWARD gratefully acknowledges the Department of Health's financial support under Section 64 grant scheme. However government funding to FGM work in the UK is poorly resourced and unsustainable; and there is therefore an urgent need for better coordination of interventions and a full financial audit of government funding for FGM over the past five years.

A copy of "A Statistical Study to Estimate the Prevalence of FGM in England and Wales" is available on our website or on demand.

FORWARD is the leading UK registered charity working to eliminate Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), Child and Forced Marriage (C&FM) and related sexual rights violations in the UK and Africa.

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) constitutes partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or injury to the external female genitals for non therapeutic reasons.

SOURCE: Medical News Today

URL: Click here

DATE: 14/06/2008

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