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***News Release***

#EndFGMToday Thankful for the 27 States That Protect Girls from Female Genital Mutilation

International Child Advocate Elizabeth Yore Says 2019 Must Be the Year When 23 Additional States Enact Tough Anti-FGM Laws

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Several hardworking and dedicated lawmakers this year have fulfilled their commitments to protect women and girls in their states from the horrors of female genital mutilation.

To date, 27 states have enacted anti-FGM laws, and international child advocate and attorney Elizabeth Yore, who leads the national #EndFGMToday initiative, is immensely thankful for their efforts. But that leaves 23 states that have not yet made the terrible, brutal and unnecessary practice of FGM illegal in their states.

“The progress of anti-FGM at the state level has been positive and uplifting, as we see more and more states considering laws to protect women and girls from the emotional and physical damage of female genital mutilation,” Yore said. “This year alone, New Hampshire, Tennessee, Alabama and Louisiana have enacted new laws or strengthened their FGM measures. However, 23 states still do not have laws protecting females from this ghastly practice—and that must change. We will be advocating in the new legislative sessions to further protect these girls so they are safe from FGM in all 50 states.”

The first federal FGM trial is on the docket in Michigan, where three individuals are charged with allegedly mutilating two 7-year-old Somali immigrant girls—assuredly the tip of the iceberg when it comes to those yet to be identified, charged and prosecuted, Yore said.

View the at EndFGMToday.com state-by-state map of those who do have anti-FGM laws.

Yore 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 and barbaric practice. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control estimates that 513,000 girls and women are at risk of FGM in the United States.

Learn more about FGM at www.EndFGMToday.com or on social media at #EndFGMToday.