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The Barnet Safeguarding Children Partnership

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)

If you are in immediate danger or know another child who is then please call 999

What is FGM?

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), also known as female circumcision or female genital cutting, is "all procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injuries to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons".

Girls are at particular risk of FGM during the school summer holidays as this is the time when families may take their children abroad for the procedure. Many girls may be at risk of undergoing FGM.

Religious, social or cultural reasons are sometimes given for FGM. However, FGM is child abuse. It's dangerous and a criminal offence.

There are no medical reasons to carry out FGM. It doesn't enhance fertility and it doesn't make childbirth safer. It is used to control female sexuality and can cause severe and long-lasting damage to physical and emotional health.

What to do if you are worried?

If you suspect that someone you know is at risk of being subjected to any form of FGM, you should take action and report it immediately. Time is of the essence, so please act as soon as you suspect that a girl may be at risk.

There are adults who can help so it is important to tell someone you trust so they can take steps to protect you or the person you are worried about. You can speak to a social worker who will listen to your concerns and work with other professionals to promote your safety.

Contact the MASH Team on 020 8359 4066 to speak to a social worker or email mash@barnet.gov.uk.

Other support

If you want to speak to someone else or just find out more below are some helpful websites:

NSPCC information page about FGM

The Orchid Project


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