Target: Prime Minister David Cameron
Goal: Prosecute female genital mutilation in the UK.
Since it was outlawed in 1985, not a single case of female genital mutilation (FGM) has been prosecuted. According to research by FORWARD, the leading UK charity working against FGM, approximately 66,000 girls have been mutilated in the UK, and 24,000 girls under 16 in England and Wales could be at risk of FGM.
FGM is the alteration of female genitals for non-medical purposes. This includes, but is not limited to, the partial or total removal of the clitoris and/or labia minora, the excision of the labia majora, and infibulation, which effectively seals most of the vagina closed. It is thought that mutilating the genitals in these ways will prevent young women from having sex, and thus ruining their virtue. This torturous practice is a dangerous and immoral means of exercising control over female sexuality.
The Home Office webpage for FGM offers facts, statistics, and a few phone numbers, but gives little information about how to report these crimes, what kind of investigations are made, and what kind of charges are filed. The information is given only in English.
In order to take action toward eliminating FGM, the UK government must provide victims with more information about reporting, investigating, and charging FGM as a crime, and must actually investigate and prosecute reported FGM cases.
Dear Prime Minister Cameron,
The Prohibition of Female Circumcision Act of 1985 and the Female Genital Mutilation Act of 2003 are necessary tools with which to fight the practice of female genital mutilation. While the laws themselves make a statement, they cannot deter people from performing female genital mutilation (FGM) if they are not enforced.
In order to successfully investigate and prosecute FGM, there first must be more extensive and accessible information available to victims. Please add more information about how to report FGM and the investigation and prosecution process on the Home Office webpage for FGM, and include translations into other languages.
Next, please dedicate time and effort to actually prosecuting this serious crime. FGM is dangerous, cruel, and a complete violation of women’s rights. FGM will not stop until those who practice it are brought to justice.
[Your Name Here]