The 11 States That Risk Becoming Destinations for FGM

The recently reestablished federal law against FGM does not guarantee protection for girls and women at risk in states that still lack a state ban against this heinous practice.

02-03-2021

Take Action: Demand Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation in the U.S.

Although female genital mutilation (FGM) is internationally recognized as a human rights violation, 11 states, and the District of Columbia, still do not have laws protecting girls from this heinous practice within the United States. These states are at risk of becoming trafficking destinations for FGM despite a recently reestablished federal FGM ban. 

The federal bill doesn’t guarantee protection for women and girls at risk for FGM in states that do not have their own bill outlawing the practice. The best way to ensure the safety of women and girls is to back up the federal ban with comprehensive state legislation.

We are calling on our supporters in these remaining states to demand that their legislators prioritize women and girls in their state by banning this practice. Legislators tell us that hearing from their constituents matters. They want to hear from you! 

Look below to see if your state lacks an anti-FGM law, and why their efforts to criminalize FGM are failing. Find sample letter templates and your legislators below if you live in one of the states who lack anti-FGM laws. Take five minutes and speak up for the girls who are voiceless.

Alabama - Dead in the Senate

Contact your state senator today!

Sample letter: Ban Female Genital Mutilation in Alabama

Find your Legislators

Connecticut - Fails at Protecting Girls Year After Year
Hawaii - Dead on Arrival

Indiana - No Interest in Protecting Girls from Genital Mutilation
Maine - Politicians Stay Partisan in the Face of Girls At Risk of FGM
Mississippi - Complacency Leaves Girls At Risk
Montana - Lack of Awareness Leads to Lack of Action
Nebraska - Inaction of Legislators is Unacceptable
New Mexico - Legislators Ignore Girls At Risk

Washington - Legislators Keep Ignoring the Largest At Risk Population
D.C. - U.S. Capitol Still Lacks Anti-FGM Legislation

*Estimate is for the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria metropolitan statistical area. Arlington and Alexandria located in the bordering state of Virginia.

Sample letter: Ban Female Genital Mutilation in DC

Find your Council member


The numbers of girls at-risk in each state have been calculated by the Population Reference Bureau. However, based on their methodology, we believe these numbers underestimate the true number of girls at risk, and believe that the actuall number is much higher. Please reach out to your legislators if you live in one of these areas, and help garner support. We must put a law in place in every state.

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2 Comments

  1. The AHA Foundation says:

    Jinnie,

    Thank you so much for asking about how you can help. In a state like Washington, it’s people like you who are going to make the difference. Truly, the first step is raising local awareness with your representatives and teaching them about FGM and how it is being ignored in their state. Representative Shelly Kloba introduced an Anti-FGM bill last year that gained little attraction. Making sure Rep. Kloba is still interested in pursuing that bill is a good start while also contacting other legislatures who may be willing to back her bill as well. The more support it can get, the more traction it will gain.

    Here are some links you can send these legislators to help give them an idea of how prevalent FGM is:
    https://www.theahafoundation.org/female-genital-mutilation/fgm-legislation-by-state/
    https://www.theahafoundation.org/female-genital-mutilation/
    https://www.theahafoundation.org/fact-sheets/
    https://www.theahafoundation.org/advocacy/

  2. Jinne says:

    I live in WA state. What can I do to help.

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