Police vow to take a stand over female genital mutilation
PCC and force will work together on the issue
POLICE have vowed to crack down on the ‘brutal practice’ of female genital mutilation (FGM).
Thames Valley Police is working together with partners to stop FGM. The world marked the international day of zero tolerance of FGM on Friday.
FGM is a practice involving the cutting, removal and damage of the female genitalia for supposed cultural, religious or any other nonmedical reasons.
It can lead to a lifetime of pain, ill-health and psychological trauma for girls and women. That is why Thames Valley Police and the police and crime commissioner (PCC) for Thames Valley, Anthony Stansfeld, are working with partner agencies to safeguard the welfare of girls and women living in the UK.
The PCC has given £3,260 to the safeguarding board for workshops and seminars to gain greater understanding of FGM.
He has also written a letter of support recommending the workshops to all schools, directors of public health, hospital trusts, community safety partnerships and GPs.
Thames Valley Police FGM lead Detective Chief Inspector Katy Barrow-Grint said: “FGM is child abuse.
“It’s a crime and not be tolerated.
“Thames Valley Police, working closely with partners such as children’s social care, health, education, and local safeguarding boards, aims to protect children from this horrific crime.”
Mr Stansfeld said: “Tackling FGM is one of my key priorities and I’m committed to working nationally and locally with partners to not only raise awareness, but to support victims of FGM and safeguard those at risk.
“I, along with our partner organisations, will
will do everything in our power to bring about the change that is necessary to stop this horrific crime and protect children.”
Chesham councillor Noel Brown, who represents Chiltern on the Thames Valley police and crime panel, said: “It’s very concerning and it seems to be a wider problem here than people think. Girls are being taken abroad and there’s nothing we can do, it’s a tragedy. It’s something that will affect them for the rest of their lives.”
Anyone with concerns about FGM can call Thames Valley Police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.