FGM Legislation by State

Currently, there is anti-FGM legislation in only 34 states, meaning that 16 STATES HAVE YET TO CRIMINALIZE FGM. The majority of states that do have FGM legislation can strengthen their legislation to further protect the girls in their state.

FGM Legislation by State

Currently, there is anti-FGM legislation in only 34 states, meaning that 16 STATES HAVE YET TO CRIMINALIZE FGM. The majority of states that do have FGM legislation can strengthen their legislation to further protect the girls in their state.

Grade legend:

 

*Information for number of women and girls at risk of FGM are estimates from the Population Reference Bureau.

Strong State Legislation Against FGM Protects Lives

 

Federal legislation that protects girls from FGM is not enough.
State legislation can do much more to protect girls in each state because it will:

 

Send a STRONG MESSAGE THAT FGM WILL NOT BE TOLERATED in the state.

 

GIVE PROSECUTORS THE TOOLS and access to resources to bring perpetrators to justice.

 

Signal to state prosecutors that FGM IS A CRIME that must be prosecuted.

_

Fill gaps in federal legislation such as EDUCATION AND OUTREACH TARGETED TO AT RISK COMMUNITIES and the professionals likely to encounter girls at risk of FGM.

 

PREVENT GIRLS BEING TRAFFICKED ACROSS STATE BORDERS to perform FGM.

  • "The legislation (against FGM) was bipartisan because representatives on both sides of the aisle were shocked by the fact that female genital mutilation was taking place in Michigan. As we learned more about what happened, we all understood how important it was to address this human rights issue immediately. We achieved bipartisan support for the bills through numerous conversations to ensure that we carefully vetted all the details of the bills and through talking to fellow legislators about the issue."

     

     
    Stephanie Chang
    State Legislator in Michigan’s House of Representatives
  • "When I heard Ayaan Hirsi Ali talking to Tucker Carlson on Fox News about the case in Michigan, I was so horrified that I immediately reviewed our existing state laws to determine whether this could happen in Texas. While we had laws against the practice of FGM, we did not have anything in law to punish those who help facilitate the FGM practice by transporting girls to undergo this gruesome act. I introduced legislation. Every woman in the Texas Senate signed on as a joint author, and we overwhelmingly approved a new law making it a felony to transport girls for FGM procedures. I am so grateful for Ms. Hirsi Ali for courageously speaking out about this important issue. There is no place in our society for this barbaric practice.

     
    Senator Jane Nelson
    Texas
  • Beth Watters

    "With girls at risk in Massachusetts, we felt it was key to have state legislation as one of the many tools needed to fight female genital mutilation. The AHA Foundation has been a significant resource and guide in helping us navigate the process."

     
    Beth Watters
    Massachusetts Women’s Bar Association

Strong State Legislation Against FGM Protects Lives

 

Federal legislation that protects girls from FGM is not enough.
State legislation can do much more to protect girls in each state because it will:

Send a STRONG MESSAGE THAT FGM WILL NOT BE TOLERATED in the state.

GIVE PROSECUTORS THE TOOLS and access to resources to bring perpetrators to justice.

Signal to state prosecutors that FGM IS A CRIME that must be prosecuted.

Fill gaps in federal legislation such as EDUCATION AND OUTREACH TARGETED TO AT RISK COMMUNITIES and the professionals likely to encounter girls at risk of FGM.

PREVENT GIRLS BEING TRAFFICKED ACROSS STATE BORDERS to perform FGM.

“The legislation (against FGM) was bipartisan because representatives on both sides of the aisle were shocked by the fact that female genital mutilation was taking place in Michigan.

Read more

As we learned more about what happened, we all understood how important it was to address this human rights issue immediately. We achieved bipartisan support for the bills through numerous conversations to ensure that we carefully vetted all the details of the bills and through talking to fellow legislators about the issue.”

 

Stephanie Chang

State Legislator in Michigan’s House of Representatives

“When I heard Ayaan Hirsi Ali talking to Tucker Carlson on Fox News about the case in Michigan, I was so horrified that I immediately reviewed our existing state laws to determine whether this could happen in Texas.

Read more

While we had laws against the practice of FGM, we did not have anything in law to punish those who help facilitate the FGM practice by transporting girls to undergo this gruesome act. I introduced legislation. Every woman in the Texas Senate signed on as a joint author, and we overwhelmingly approved a new law making it a felony to transport girls for FGM procedures. I am so grateful for Ms. Hirsi Ali for courageously speaking out about this important issue. There is no place in our society for this barbaric practice.”

 

Senator Jane Nelson

Texas

“The legislation (against FGM) was bipartisan because representatives on both sides of the aisle were shocked by the fact that female genital mutilation was taking place in Michigan.

Read more

As we learned more about what happened, we all understood how important it was to address this human rights issue immediately. We achieved bipartisan support for the bills through numerous conversations to ensure that we carefully vetted all the details of the bills and through talking to fellow legislators about the issue.”

 

Beth Watters

Massachusetts Women’s Bar Association

You can help end FGM today. Use the power of your voice.


HELP AHA FOUNDATION STOP FGM IN THE U.S.

 

Urge your state legislature to pass the AHA Foundation’s model FGM state legislation.
To find out how you can help our efforts to pass legislation in all 50 states, email [email protected]

Donate

Alabama

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 1,480

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Alaska

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 20

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Arizona

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 7,459

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents/guardians, no facilitating FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, victims can pursue a civil cause for action

Improve by adding: Culture is not a defense provision, education and outreach provision

Arkansas

Grade: A

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 551

Status: Strong Existing Legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes facilitating FGM, prosecutes parents/guardian, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, mandatory reporting, victims can sue for damages, education and outreach provision, requires annual FGM report

Improve by adding: Mandated medical license revocation

California

Grade: C

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 56,872

Status: Existing legislation needs strengthening

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, prosecutes facilitating FGM, education and outreach provision

Improve by adding: Culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision

Colorado

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 8,705

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: “Vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision, prosecuting facilitating FGM

Connecticut

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 2,658

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Delaware

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 2,238

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, culture is not a defense provision, includes vulnerable adults in protections

Improve by adding: “Vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision, prosecuting facilitating FGM

Arizona

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 11,180

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, prosecutes facilitating FGM, “vacation cutting” provision

Improve by adding: Culture is not a defense provision, education and outreach provision

Georgia

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 20,476

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: Prosecuting facilitating FGM, education and outreach provision

Hawaii

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: -

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Idaho

Grade: C

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 566

Status: Existing Legislation Needs Strengthening

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, culture is not a defense provision, tolls statute of limitations for victims

Improve by adding: Prosecuting parents, prosecuting facilitating FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Illinois

Grade: D

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 12,039

Status: Inadequate existing legislation needs strengthening

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner

Improve by adding: Prosecuting parents, prosecuting facilitating FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision, education and outreach provision

Indiana

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 5,251

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Iowa

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 5,142

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Improve by adding: Prosecuting facilitating FGM, prosecuting parents/guardian

Kansas

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 3,171

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: Prosecuting facilitating FGM, education and outreach provision

Kentucky

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 1,845

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Louisiana

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 1,524

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: Prosecuting facilitating FGM, education and outreach provision

Maine

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 1,603

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Maryland

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 31,820

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: “Vacation cutting” provision, prosecuting facilitating FGM, education and outreach provision

Massachusetts

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 14,211

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Michigan

Grade: A

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 10,493

Status: Strong existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Prosecute practitioner, prosecute parents/guardian, prosecute facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision, revokes license of medical practitioner

Improve by adding: Continue strengthening legislation through other provisions such as including mandatory reporting, mandatory law enforcement training, etc.

Minnesota

Grade: D

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 44,293

Status: Inadequate existing legislation needs strengthening

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, education and outreach

Improve by adding: Prosecuting parents, prosecuting facilitating FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision

Mississippi

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 442

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Missouri

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 4,043

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: “Vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach, increase age to 18 (currently at 17)

Montana

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 302

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Nebraska

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 1,549

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Nevada

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 7,457

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents, prosecuting “encouraging” FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: Education and outreach provision

New Hampshire

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 403

Status: Adequate Existing Legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecute facilitating FGM, education and outreach provision

New Jersey

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 31,023

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: Prosecuting facilitating FGM, education and outreach provision

New Mexico

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 317

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

New York

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 48,418

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes facilitating FGM, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, culture is not a defense provision, education and outreach provision

Improve by adding: “Vacation cutting” provision

North Carolina

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 9,399

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

North Dakota

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 531

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner,  prosecutes parents/guardian, culture is not a defense provision, tolls statute of limitations for victims

Improve by adding: Prosecuting facilitating FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Ohio

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 24,320

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner,  “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: Prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecutes facilitating FGM, education and outreach provision

Oklahoma

Grade: D

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 1,788

Status: Inadequate existing legislation needs strengthening

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner

Improve by adding: Prosecuting parents, prosecuting facilitating FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision, education and outreach provision

Oregon

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 2,647

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, culture is not a defense provision, education and outreach provision

Improve by adding: “Vacation cutting” provision, prosecuting facilitating FGM

Pennsylvania

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 19,480

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents/guardian, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision

Improve by adding: Prosecuting facilitating FGM, education and outreach provision

** Pennsylvania law effective August 27, 2019

Rhode Island

Grade: D

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 2,754

Status: Inadequate existing legislation needs strengthening

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner

Improve by adding: Prosecuting parents, prosecuting facilitating FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision, education and outreach provision

South Carolina

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 1,395

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes facilitating FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: Prosecuting parents, education and outreach provision

South Dakota

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 1,019

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, prosecutes “encouraging” FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: Education and outreach provision

Tennessee

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 8,062

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes facilitating FGM, prosecutes parents/guardian, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, mandatory reporting, requires annual FGM report

Improve by adding: Education and outreach provision

Texas

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 33,087

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, “vacation cutting” provision, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: Prosecuting facilitating FGM, education and outreach provision

Utah

Grade: A

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 1,769

Status: Strong existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes facilitating FGM, prosecutes parents/guardian, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, mandatory reporting, victims can sue for damages, education and outreach provision, medical professional disciplinary action including possible license revocationrevokes license of medical practitioner

Improve by adding: Annual statistical reporting

Vermont

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 650

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Virginia

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 30,830

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, “vacation cutting” provision, victims can sue for damages, family life education limited to school age children

Improve by adding: Prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, education and outreach provision

Washington

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 25,000

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

West Virginia

Grade: B

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 124

Status: Adequate existing legislation

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, prosecutes parents, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: Prosecuting facilitating FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Wisconsin

Grade: D

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 2,144

Status: Inadequate existing legislation needs strengthening

Current legislation includes: Felony charges, prosecutes practitioner, culture is not a defense provision

Improve by adding: Prosecuting parents, prosecuting facilitating FGM, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision

Wyoming

Grade: F

Number of Women and Girls At Risk: 438

Status: No anti-FGM legislation

Improve by adding: Prosecuting practitioner, prosecuting parents/guardian, prosecuting facilitating FGM, culture is not a defense provision, “vacation cutting” provision, education and outreach provision