Include Female Genital Mutilation in the Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act
I am writing to urge you to include female genital mutilation (FGM) in the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).
I call on Congress to:
- Increase the federal penalty for FGM from five to 15 years
- Include funding for education and outreach to communities and professionals likely to encounter survivors and at – risk individuals
- Create a unified governmental approach to ending FGM through inter – agency cooperation
- Develop comprehensive model state FGM legislation with stakeholders consulted in the drafting process
Female genital mutilation is internationally recognized as a violation of the fundamental human rights of women and girls. Girls who undergo FGM may face lifelong physical and psychological consequences.
Thousands of girls in the United States are vulnerable to FGM.
I therefore urge you to include FGM in the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act and protect the most vulnerable of our population: little girls.