Female Genital Mutilation


Female Genital Mutilation is child abuse and violence against women and girls, and has severe short-term and long-term physical and psychological consequences.

It is illegal in the UK to subject a girl or woman to FGM or to assist a non-UK person to carry out FGM overseas. FGM is prevalent in 28 African countries as well as in parts of the Middle East and Asia and it has been estimated that over 20,000 girls under the age of 15 are at high risk of FGM in the UK each year and that 66,000 women in the UK are living with the consequences, although its true extent is unknown due to the hidden nature of the crime. FGM is practised by families for a variety of complex reasons but often in the belief that it is beneficial for the girl or woman.

HM Government Multi Agency Guidance

In April 2016 HM Government published Multi Agency Guidance on how agency should work together in identifying, responding to and supporting victims of incidents of Female Genital Mutilation. The guidance can be accessed via the attached link.

FREE e learning

The Home Office has launched a free online training package dealing with female genital mutilation (FGM), developed with Virtual College.

The free e-learning module will give teachers, police, doctors, social workers and Border Force staff the training they need to help them identify and assist girls who are at risk of FGM.

To access this FREE elearning please click on the the link below:

Home Office FREE FGM E Learning

NSPCC Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) helpline

The NSPCC has set up a 24-hour FGM helpline offering advice, information and support to anyone concerned that a child’s welfare is at risk because of female genital mutilation.

0800 028 3550


The Department of Health has sent the ‘Female Genital Mutilation Resource Pack’ to all GP practices in England

The pack includes:

  • Raising Awareness of Female Genital Mutilation – a training DVD developed by Health Education England.
  • FGM Risk and Safeguarding – Guidance for Professionals by the Department of Health in March 2015
  • 2 copies of the Patient Information Leaflet in English,
  • 2 copies of ‘A statement opposing FGM’ also known as the FGM Health passport.
  • FGM Enhanced Dataset: Implementation Summary for GP Practices. For further information please see www.hscic.gov.uk/fgm

Duty to notify police of female genital mutilation

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is illegal in England and Wales under the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003. It is a form of child abuse and violence against women.

Section 74 of the Serious Crime Act 2015 has amended Section 5 of the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003 by introducing a mandatory reporting duty (Section 5B) which requires regulated health and social care professionals and teachers in England and Wales to report ‘known’ cases of FGM in under 18s which they identify in the course of their professional work to the police. The duty applies from 31 October 2015 onwards.

The Home Office has published a guidance document about the new duty; Mandatory Reporting of Female Genital Mutilation – procedural information. This document can be accessed via the link below:

Reporting of Female Genital Mutilation – procedural information