Police Commissioner gets behind fight against FGM

Avon and Somerset's Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens has welcomed government plans to protect children at risk of female genital mutilation.

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A&S Police Commissioner supports plans to stop FGM

Avon and Somerset's Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens has welcomed government plans to protect children at risk of female genital mutilation.

Bristol teenager Fahma Mohammed has been a leading campaigner against the practice - which is illegal in the UK - but common in some parts of Africa.

The government says tougher action must be taken. Keith Vaz MP is Chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee:-

Education Secretary to write to all headteachers

A schoolgirl from Bristol met the Education Secretary today as part of her campaign to outlaw the practice known as FGM - Female Genital Mutilation.

Michael Gove says he will write to every headteacher in the country about the issue, outlining how to keep children safe.

I was very pleased to meet Fahma Mohamed today. She has been running an inspirational campaign. Fahma and her supporters have done fantastic work in raising awareness of female genital mutilation. It is a truly horrific crime. We must do everything we can to end it.

I outlined to Fahma our plans to send every school in the country guidance on keeping children safe. The guidance will be sent out by Easter and it will specifically include material that will enable everyone working with young people to tackle female genital mutilation.

I will write to all headteachers to draw their attention to the updated schools safeguarding guidance and to reiterate that all teachers should familiarise themselves with it.

I was interested to hear Fahma’s thoughts on training for teachers in this area and on how education about female genital mutilation can be made age appropriate. I have asked her to send me further evidence of good practice.

I thank Fahma – and other courageous public campaigners against female genital mutilation – for their efforts. We all want to see this very serious form of child abuse consigned to history.

– Michael Gove, Education Secretary

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Bristol teen meets Education Secretary over FGM

A schoolgirl from Bristol has been meeting the Education Secretary today as part of her campaign to outlaw the practice known as FGM - Female Genital Mutilation.

Fahma Mohamed wants schools to play a greater part in raising awareness of the practice, which is thought to be widespread among the Somali community, from which she comes.

Our political correspondent Bob Constantine reports:-