In her role as Minister for Public Health, Nicola was joined by other Ministers from DFID and and the Treasury as well as activists activists for the Girl Summit co-hosted by the Government and Unicef in the House of Commons, marking the second anniversary of the Summit which aims to end Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and Child, Early and Forced Marriage (CEFM) within a generation.
This important Summit brought together heads of state, practitioners, survivors, charities and community groups to discuss girls’ rights, and comes after data from the Health and Social Care Information Centre showed that between April 2015 and March 2016 there were 7,702 new cases of FGM in England. Although most of the women and girls underwent the procedure there, 43 of the girls were born in the UK and 18 of these had undergone the procedure in the UK.
We have seen encouraging progress over recent years; Nigeria and The Gambia have passed anti-FGM laws and it is hoped that this will have a ripple-effect in other countries.
At the Summit, Nicola gave a speech launching the video series ‘FGM: the facts’ which aim to better inform the public about FGM and how it can be prevented.
FGM devastates lives, and we are committed to ending this abusive practice. Too often FGM is a hidden crime so to help us do this, we must know the scale of the problem which is why we are collecting data on FGM across the NHS. This means we can protect those at risk, provide support to survivors and ultimately end this crime once and for all.