Is it an offense to fail to protect a girl from FGM?

Is it an offense to fail to protect a girl from FGM?

The offence of failing to protect a girl from the risk of FGM The maximum penalty for the new offence is seven years' imprisonment or a fine or both. It will also be an offence if a person neglects to take reasonable steps to prevent another person from being subjected to FGM.

There are international agreements that prohibit FGM. In England, Scotland and Wales, it is an offence to perform FGM on a female under 18. In Northern Ireland, it is an offence to engage in, promote, facilitate or require FGM to be performed on a female. There is no minimum age for committing this crime in all three countries.

In addition, failure to protect a girl from FGM is a criminal offence in many countries including Australia, Belgium, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Morocco, Nepal, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Portugal, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, United States of America and Yemen.

FGM is a violation of human rights law and cannot be justified as a matter of medical practice. All governments should do everything possible to eliminate FGM because it causes death and serious disability.

Is FGM a criminal offence?

FGM is a punishable offense. It is a kind of violence against women and girls, as well as child abuse in the latter situation. The exact number of victims of FGM is unknown because many cases go unreported.

The practice is prohibited in England and Wales by law. This was done by the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003 which came into effect on 20 February 2005. The act states that any person who mutilates the genitalia of another person shall be punished with up to five years in prison.

The act also makes it clear that FGM is harmful to its victims' health and therefore violates human rights. The government has issued guidance for doctors and nurses on how they can help prevent and report FGM.

In April 2012, the British government announced its intention to introduce legislation to make FGM a specific crime. Under this plan, anyone who performs FGM on a minor would face up to five years in prison. The government has not set a date for when this will happen but it is expected before the end of 2012.

A recent study conducted by the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine found that almost all (99%) of UK-based midwives and doctors believed that FGM should be made illegal.

Where is FGM legal?

Current legislation Section 1 of the 2003 Act makes it a criminal for anybody in England, Wales, or Northern Ireland (regardless of nationality or residency status) to conduct FGM on a girl or to assist a girl in performing FGM on herself (section 2). The punishment for those convicted can be up to 5 years in prison.

In addition, the government has announced its intention to introduce new laws making FGM an offence even if no part of the procedure is carried out in the UK. This would include cases where girls are taken abroad for the operation.

Under section 3 of the Act, anyone who suffers FGM faces imprisonment of up to 4 years and/or a fine. The Act also creates a crime of assisting a person to perform FGM if such assistance includes providing advice or knowing that someone is about to provide such assistance. This provision could lead to further charges being brought against people who provide information or resources on-line that help practitioners carry out FGM procedures.

Finally, under section 4 of the Act, doctors will be able to report cases of suspected FGM to police or other authorities. If doctors believe that a girl may have been subjected to FGM they are required by law to report their concerns. Those reports can then be used as evidence in court cases.

About Article Author

Derrick True

Derrick True is a former agent. He has been in the field for over ten years and he has seen his fair share of danger. Derrick was always one to take risks and show no fear, but as time went by he realized that it wasn't worth it. He decided to retire from the agency so now he can spend more time with his family and write about his fair share of experiences.

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