Young girls in Cambridgeshire at risk of female genital mutilation, figures show
- Credit: Archant
Young girls living in the area are at risk of female genital mutilation according to shocking new figures which show 25 new cases were reported last year.
NHS Digital statistics, which record hospital admissions, show there were 25 newly recorded cases of FGM in the Peterborough local authority in 2016/17.
An NSPCC spokesman said: “Once more, these figures highlight that FGM continues to affect hundreds of girls and women living in communities across England.
“FGM is child abuse. Despite being illegal for over 30 years, too many people are still being subjected to it and it is right that health services have started to properly record evidence of this horrendous practice.
“The NSPCC Helpline is contacted more than once a day by people worried about girls who may have suffered, or are at risk of, FGM.
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“It takes courage to report concerns as many feel ashamed or worry they will betray friends and family.
“But we need to end the silence that surrounds FGM to better protect children.”
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Newly recorded women and girls with FGM are those who have had their information collected in the FGM Enhanced Dataset for the first time.
It may be that the woman is discovered to hae been abused as a hcild but now rpesents at, for ecample, peterborough City hOspital, during her pregnancy.
It doesn not necessarily mean they are taken to hospital suffering complciations or injruesi from FGM.
An NSPCC spokesman said: “It does not necessarily mean that the attendance is the woman or girl’s first attendance for FGM – just that it is now in this dataset for the first time.”
FORWARD, a charity that works in the UK, Europe and Africa to safeguard girls at risk of FGM and support women, said: “60,000 girls under 15 are at risk of FGM in the UK and 137,000 girls and women are living with the consequences of it in this country.
“Over 130 million girls and women worldwide have undergone FGM.
“FGM is practiced in more than 29 countries across Africa, parts of the Middle East, South East Asia and countries where migrants from FGM affected communities live.”
Anyone concerned about a person who has suffered, or is at risk of, FGM, can contact the NSPCC FGM Helpline anonymously on 0800 028 3550.