Safeguarding – Female Genital Mutilation
In April 2014 every school in England received new safeguarding guidelines and detailed information on identifying and responding to Female Genital Mutilation. FGM is a procedure carried out on young girls between the ages of infancy and 15 years of age.
Female Genital Mutilation is classified as a form of Child Abuse in the UK. It therefore makes the procedure of it a serious Child Protection issue. It is illegal for anyone to perform FGM in the UK or to arrange for a child to be transported to another country for the procedure. The maximum sentence for carrying out FGM or helping it to take place is 14 years in prison.
There is lots of information and support available online for parents/carers concerned about this subject or if you know someone who is at risk:
- Contact the Police if you think that a girl or young woman is in danger of FGM and is still in the UK.
- Contact the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (020 7008 1500) if she’s already been taken abroad.
The NSPCC has detailed advice on how to spot the signs, symptoms and effects of FGM and provides support for people who are concerned about a child or who have been affected themselves. The link to the website is below.