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Published in The Sharon (Pa.) Herald

Pennsylvania is on track to become the 34th state to ban female genital mutilation, a cultural practice used by some ethnic groups that the Centers for Disease Control has described as a violation of women’s human rights.

There are believed to be 20,000 girls in Pennsylvania at risk for being subjected to female genital mutilation, according to the CDC.

Legislation on the way to Gov. Tom Wolf would ban the practice. Thursday, J.J. Abbott, a spokesman for the governor, said Wolf intends to sign the bill.

“I’m thrilled,” said Liz Yore, an advocate for children who leads EndFGMToday, a national campaign to outlaw the practice, traditionally employed in some Middle Eastern, Southern Asian and African cultures. According to CDC, 55 percent of the girls subjected to female genital mutilation in this country are from families that originated in three countries: Egypt, Ethiopia and Somalia. Continue reading…

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