Jasmine Lee Kennedy Reporter
There were 5,500 recorded cases of female genital mutilation (FGM) in the UK in 2016, 50% of which were in London.
Of these cases, no one has been successfully prosecuted, and 65,000 girls under the age of 13 are at risk of the procedure in the UK.
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has previously said that he will not tolerate FGM, and that tackling it will be a major part of his mayoralty.
At the London Assembly this morning, he said that the fight to eradicate FGM has finally been brought in to the political mainstream.
Prior to the assembly, Jeanette Arnold, London Assembly member for North East London, wrote a letter to the Mayor saying that despite the very positive steps that had been taken, there is still clearly further work to be done to make London a ‘Zero Cutting City’.
She asked Khan to consider a few key matters in his final Police and Crime Plan including leadership, collaborative and partnership working, education and training, information sharing, resources and long-term funding:
“You must take a visible lead and speak out against FGM. Your Police and Crime Plan must show your commitment – driving a more effective multi-agency response to FGM, with a shared vision across organisations and aspirations for action.
“We heard that many professionals are not certain about what FGM is and how they should respond – they also said that more needs to be done to educate and raise awareness to help front line practitioners better protect those who might be at risk of FGM.
Mayor Khan praised Arnold for her activism in tackling FGM, and said that he intends to work with all these services to end the practice.