username

password

Coram ChambersAlpha Biolabsimage of 4 Paper Buildings logoFamily Law Week Email SubscriptionHarcourt Chamberssite by Zehuti

Home > News

4,495 newly recorded FGM cases in year to March 2018

Much more needs to be done to support survivors and protect girls at risk, says Barnardo’s

Between April 2017 to March 2018 there were 6,195 individual women and girls who had an attendance where FGM was identified or a procedure related to FGM was undertaken. The figures were set out in the NHS's Female Genital Mutilation annual report. These accounted for 9,490 attendances reported at NHS trusts and GP practices where FGM was identified or a procedure related to FGM was undertaken. Of the 6,195 women and girls, 85 cases of FGM took place in the UK.

There were 4,495 newly recorded women and girls in the period April 2017 to March 2018. Newly recorded means this is the first time they have appeared in the data released as part of the annual report. It does not indicate how recently the FGM was undertaken, nor does it mean that this is the woman or girl's first attendance for FGM.

Barnardo's, the children's charity, responding to the latest statistics, said that much more needs to be done to support survivors of female genital mutilation and protect girls at risk.

The charity noted that the National FGM Centre has said that it is vital for agencies, such as the police, education, health and social care, to work better together to prosecute those who carry out this type of abuse.

The most common age range when FGM took place was between 0 and 10 years old. But the statistics reveal it can take years before a medical professional is aware of it – often during an appointment with an obstetrician or gynaecologist.

FGM was detected when the person was still a child (under 18 years old) in just 70 of the 6,195 cases – with it more commonly being discovered during a medical appointment when the woman was aged between 25 and 40.

The National FGM Centre is run by Barnardo's and the Local Government Association. Its head, Leethen Bartholomew, said:

"Shockingly, the figures confirm that dozens of women and girls born in the UK have undergone FGM, despite the practice being illegal for over 30 years. Yet there still hasn't been a single successful prosecution to hold perpetrators to account. FGM is child abuse and it's vital that we work with affected communities to change hearts and minds about the practice.

"Agencies must also work better together to prosecute those who fail to protect girls from this type of abuse."

To outline how the National FGM Centre works with affected communities and agencies, such as the police, education, health and social care, to achieve the target of ending FGM in the UK by 2030 – and also talk about what more can be done – it is holding a conference on Monday, 9 July 2018. The event at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists will not only feature the work of the centre but will also include clinical psychologist Nimmi Parikh, from Great Ormond Street Hospital, speaking about the psychological impact and Inspector Allen Davis speaking about the Metropolitan Police's work to tackle FGM.

For the full statistics, click here. For Barnardo's full response to the figures, click here.

8/7/18