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Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and Honour Based Violence (HBV)

Female genital mutilation is the mutilation of the external female genitalia for non-medical reasons. It is often referred to as female circumcision, ‘cutting’ or ‘sunna’.
Government Statement opposing FGM

  • Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is child abuse and an extremely harmful practice with devastating health consequences for girls and women.
  • Some girls die from blood loss or infection as a direct result of the procedure.
  • Some women who have undergone FGM are also likely to find it difficult to give birth and many also suffer from long-term psychological trauma.

UK Law

  • Female genital Mutilation is a crime in the United Kingdom. Even if a girl is taken abroad to undergo FGM, it is still a crime in the UK if the mutilation is done by a UK national or a UK resident.
  • It is also a crime if a UK national or resident assists or gets a non-UK national or resident to carry out FGM overseas on a UK national or resident.
  • If FGM is committed against a girl under the age of 16, each person who is responsible for the girl at the relevant time is guilty of an offence.

Criminal Penalties

  • Anyone found guilty of an FGM offence – or of helping somebody commit one – faces up to 14 years in prison, a fine, or both.
  • Anyone found guilty of failing to protect a girl from risk of FGM faces up to 7 years in prison, a fine, or both. 

If you are worried that this might happen to you or someone you know, you can speak to a member of the safeguarding team in school. They will be able to help and support you.
Alternatively, you can report this abuse by contacting one of the following:

  • If there’s immediate danger or if you or someone you know is in immediate danger of FGM, contact the police.
    Call 999 to report emergencies or 101 for non-emergencies.
  • You should also contact the Foreign and Commonwealth Office if you know a British national who’s already been taken abroad.
    Telephone the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on: 020 7008 1500 if you or someone you know is at risk.

Contact the NSPCC anonymously if you’re worried that a girl or young woman is at risk or is a victim of FGM.
NSPCC FGM Helpline
Telephone: 0800 028 3550