Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

National

16 States, including Alabama, still have no anti-FGM laws

Outlined Alabama US state on grade school chalkboard

After Pennsylvania recently became the latest state to outlaw female genital mutilation last month, 16 states, including Alabama, remain the only states to have no legislation criminalizing the practice. 

Female genital mutilation, which is defined as a procedure to “remove, cut, circumcise, excise, mutilate, infibulate or re-infibulate” any part of the genitals for non-medical purposes on females under the age of 19.

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf signed House Bill 315 into law on June 28, making FGM is now a first-degree felony.

The Alabama House of Representatives adjourned early this year without taking action on HB 421, a bill that would have criminalized FGM.

Elizabeth Yore, child welfare advocate and head of EndFGMToday, an organization dedicated to criminalizing the practice of FGM, said the organization is immensely thankful to the legislators and governors who have taken steps to “protect girls from this horrible practice that leaves both physical and emotional scars for a lifetime.”

“The fact that 34 states now have FGM criminalization laws in their books is incredible,” Yore said. “These recently passed laws are a testament to the fact that legislators realize FGM has no place in their states. Female genital mutilation has no place in America—or anywhere else in the world.”

The states without FGM laws in place are: Alabama, Alaska, Connecticut, Hawaii, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Carolina, Vermont, Washington and Wyoming.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

The practice of FGM was declared a felony in 1996 under the Female Genital Mutilation Act. However, that law was deemed unconstitutional last year by a federal judge, leaving states to decide on regulating the practice.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that more than 200 million women and girls worldwide have been subjected to FGM. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reported in 2012 that an estimated over 500,000 women and girls in the United States are at risk of being victims of the procedure.

 

Written By

Jessa Reid Bolling is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter and graduate of The University of Alabama with a B.A. in journalism and political science.

DIG DEEPER

Courts

U.S. District Judge Liles Burke has not yet issued a ruling on a preliminary injunction. A hearing on the injunction concluded Friday afternoon.

Featured Opinion

A lot of evil has occurred in our state under the guise of heritage, law and so-called etiquette. We need to face those facts....

Local news

Through this program, 110 Birmingham residents will receive $375 a month for a 12-month period via random drawing.

Featured Opinion

The responsibility to ensure integrity in the leadership of state agencies rests squarely on the shoulders of those elected by the people.