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Children Act 1989 (Amendment) (Female Genital Mutilation) Bill proceeds to committee stage

NHS publishes latest FGM figures for England

The Children Act 1989 (Amendment) (Female Genital Mutilation) Bill received its second reading in the House of Commons on 26 February. It will begin its committee stage on 5 March.

The Bill, which commenced its passage in the House of Lords, is sponsored by Lord Berkeley of Knighton and Zac Goldsmith. It seeks to amend the Children Act 1989 to state that proceedings under Section 5A of, and Schedule 2 to, the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003 are family proceedings. The effect of the change would be to permit the court to make an interim care order where FGM has taken place.

In the second reading debate, Zac Goldsmith said:

"That is clearly an omission in the law, and it means that our courts do not have the full suite of powers necessary to protect girls who are at risk."

For the Bill, click here. For the second reading debate, click here. To follow progress of the debate, click here. For a House of Commons Library briefing providing and overview of and background to the legislation, prepared for the committee stage, click here. For the NHS's latest figures on the prevalence of FGM in England, click here.

1/3/19 (link to HoC Library briefing added 3/3/19)