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Improved joint working needed to effectively tackle FGM

Agencies need to work better together to identify girls at risk of FGM

Published on 5th September 2017

Agencies must work better together to prevent FGM from happening by identifying girls at risk, Barnardo’s has warned.

As NHS Digital released statistics about the number of identified cases of FGM in England, Barnardo’s – which runs the National FGM Centre alongside the Local Government Association – said better joint working was needed to identify girls at risk and helping to prosecute families and carers who fail to protect girls from this type of abuse.

The Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) Enhanced Dataset published by NHS Digital found that between April and June 2017 there were 2,288 attendances reported at NHS trusts and GP practices where FGM was identified or a procedure for FGM was undertaken.

There were 1,178 women and girls who had their FGM information collected in the Enhanced Dataset for the first time. This does not indicate how recently the FGM was undertaken, nor does it necessarily mean that this is the woman or girl's first attendance for FGM. It is the first time their information has been collected in the FGM Enhanced Dataset.

The director of the National FGM Centre, Michelle Lee-Izu said: “FGM is child abuse and a human rights violation and can have a life-long impact on the physical and emotional health of women and girls affected.

“The National FGM Centre, run by Barnardo’s and the Local Government Association, is tackling the issue by working directly with families, providing training and development for professionals, and engaging with communities through education events.

“Today’s figures show how vital the Centre’s work is in preventing new cases of FGM, but also how much more needs to be done to achieve the government’s target of ending this hidden form of child abuse in the UK by 2030,” Ms Lee-Izu concluded.

 

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