Female Genitalia Mutilation Protection Orders
The issue of Female Genitalia Mutilation (FGM) has been frequently discussed in the press and championed by a number of different celebrities. The police and local authorities are concerned about the number of young girls in the UK who are at risk of FGM being carried out on them either in the UK or abroad. According to the World Health Organisation FGM is still a common practice in many parts of the world.
FGM protection orders were introduced on 17 July 2015 to help protect girls and young women at risk of FGM. The Act makes it an offence to arrange or perform FGM and to protect a girl against whom a FGM offence has been committed. Involvement in an act is construed widely and can include aiding, abetting, counselling, procuring, encouraging or assisting another person to commit, or attempt to commit a FGM offence against a girl.
Legal aid is available for those wishing to apply for a FGM protection order to protect a girl who is at risk of FGM.
The protection orders give the court wide ranging powers such as to impose a restriction to prevent a girl from being taken abroad for the purposes of FGM being carried out. Only time will tell how effective the new FGM protective orders shall be in minimising the risk to young girls.
If you would like more information on FGM protection orders, or the Local Authority have become involved in your family because of concerns about FGM please do contact Vicky Shufflebottom who is on the specialist Law Society Children Panel, firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01179390350 who has been involved in a number of FGM cases.