Etain McDermott, Public Health Leicester City Council and Nicola Bassindale, Social Care & Education, Leicester City Council to submit a report and to give a presentation on proposals to strengthen Leicester City Council and its partners’ stance against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). The report provides some basic information about the practice, sets out what has been addressed so far in terms of the approach to FGM and provides some options for further work, drawing on examples from nationally recognised good practice.
Etain McDermott, Public Health Leicester City Council and Nicola Bassindale, Social Care & Education, Leicester City Council submitted a report and gave a presentation on proposals to strengthen Leicester City Council and its partners’ stance against Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). The report provided some basic information about the practice, set out what had been addressed so far in terms of the approach to FGM and provided some options for further work, drawing on examples from nationally recognised good practice to strengthen the Council’s and its partners stance against FGM. Whilst the Council condemned the practice in all its recognised forms, no dedicated work had been undertaken to formally publicise this stance or indeed invite partners to join in the stance. To address this a group of officers from a range of partners had been identified and approached with a view to forming a task and finish group.
The approach had received strong support and following this a Task and Finish had been established and was scheduled to start meeting in March 2019. The purpose of the Task Group would be to gather knowledge and intelligence on the extent of FGM in Leicester, how it was being addressed by various partners and the barriers to dealing with FGM.
Membership of the Group would include:
Further members would be identified as the work progressed.
The Task and Finish Group’s purpose was to use the knowledge and intelligence it gathered to form an action plan that addresses key priorities. These might include
It was also proposed to hold a number of community engagement events, held in conjunction with voluntary and community groups, to discuss FGM. Events for women and children would be held separately and there would be a particular focus on engagement with men and older women.
An Action Plan would be then developed and submitted to a future Board meeting for comment and sign off.
Supt O’Neill suggested that involving the Council of Faiths at an early stage would help to encourage the discussion of the issues in the community.
The Chair thanked Etain McDermott and Nicola Bassindale for their presentation.
1) That the Board supports the approach to set up a multi-agency group tasked to:-
· Seek to understand the current prevalence of FGM and how it is affecting women and girls in Leicester;
· Review current procedures and ensure the support available is accessible and effective;
· Develop a joint action plan focusing on community engagement to understand and educate about the issue within communities
2) That all Board partner organisations be encouraged to sign/support the proposed pledge.