#EndFGMToday Urges Use of Childhelp National Abuse Hotline to Uncover Hidden Horrors of Female Genital Mutilation
Multi-Lingual Counselors Available 24/7 to Help End FGM in 2018
Washington, D.C.—Elizabeth Yore, head of the initiative EndFGMToday, is hoping a disturbing female genital mutilation (FGM) case in Michigan will help uncover the hidden horrors of FGM in 2018. She is urging those who are aware of incidents of this barbaric practice to utilize the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline and help protect girls and women.
Trained representatives from the hotline answer calls 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and all calls are confidential, Yore said. Those who call 1-800-4-A-CHILD (800-422-4453) can speak with professional crisis counselors who have access to resources on female genital mutilation, which is indeed child abuse, she added. Yore has been working closely with leaders of Childhelp.
“Incredibly,” Yore wrote in an op-ed for Townhall.com about a similar hotline through the FBI, “a federal statute outlawing FGM was passed in 1996, and it has taken 21 years to bring a federal criminal prosecution. While this is a first important step, it signals the depth and extent of the covert conspiracy of silence to protect this hideous and barbaric practice on unsuspecting little girls. The public should be aware that it is also a federal crime to take a child out of the U.S. for the purposes of FGM.”
Through interpreters, Childhelp counselors provide assistance in more than 170 languages, and the hotline offers crisis intervention, information and referrals to thousands of emergency, social service and support resources. Yore urged the posting of the Childhelp hotline in offices, schools, transportation hubs including international airports, stores, hospitals and public spaces in order to defend girls from the vicious assault of FGM.
“For many years, perhaps even for generations, female genital mutilation in the U.S. has gone unreported, unsuspected and undetected because of the secretive trafficking of this barbaric practice,” Yore said. “Americans must demand that FGM no longer be imported and practiced in our country. It’s against the law. It violates the human rights of little girls, and its barbarism will not be tolerated here. The potential victims of female genital mutilation deserve and need the protection of law enforcement so that no girl will be subjected to this brutal sexual assault.”
The landmark case in Detroit involves Dr. Jumana Nagarwala, who, along with her alleged conspirators, is part of the Muslim sect Dawoodi Bohra, which mandates this horrific practice on their young daughters. Nagarwala is charged with conspiracy, genital mutilation, transporting minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, lying to a federal agent and obstructing an official proceeding. If convicted, she could face up to life in prison.
Yore also noted that the Centers for Disease Control estimates that 513,000 women and girls in the U.S. are at risk for this brutal procedure. And the number of potential FGM victims is likely vastly unreported, she said. Despite the fact that the World Health Organization and the United Nations declared FGM a violation of human rights, more than 200 million women and girls are subjected to this torture around the world.
Learn more at www.EndFGMToday.com and on social media at #EndFGMToday about FGM and efforts underway in the U.S. to stop it.