EndFGMToday Applauds Alabama House for Passing Female Genital Mutilation Bill
HB 53, Which Would Make Performing FGM a Class B Felony, Is Now with Senate Judiciary Committee
March 16, 2020
Washington, D.C.—The national EndFGMToday campaign is applauding the Alabama State House of Representatives for unanimously passing HB 53, a bill that would make performing or permitting the heinous act of female genital mutilation in the state a Class B felony.
“The Alabama House of Representatives has taken a strong stand to protect its women and girls from the brutal and unnecessary practice of female genital mutilation,” said internationally renowned attorney and child welfare advocate Elizabeth Yore, who heads EndFGMToday. “Now, it’s the Senate’s turn, as this important bill moves to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Female genital mutilation is not only a human rights violation but a terrible form of child abuse. Alabama lawmakers acted decisively once they were aware that over half a million women and girls are at risk of FGM right here in the United States—nearly 1,500 in the state of Alabama alone.”
EndFGMToday has asserted many times that state laws criminalizing FGM are all the more crucial now, after a Michigan judge ruled that the federal FGM law was unconstitutional. In the process, serious charges against three alleged FGM perpetrators awaiting trial in Detroit were dismissed. Another charge was dismissed earlier this month.
“We can no longer claim FGM ‘isn’t happening here,’” Yore added. “Alabama children are at perilous risk to the trauma, damage, and lifelong physical and emotional scars FGM leaves behind.”
Yore also noted that female genital mutilation is recognized by both the World Health Organization and the United Nations as a human rights violation perpetrated upon little girls and women. Over 200 million women worldwide have been subjected to this cruel practice.