State bills to outlaw female genital mutilation deserved vote – HeraldNet

Our state Legislature just failed to ban the barbaric procedure known as female genital mutilation (FGM). About half the states ban it, but not Washington. The Population Reference Bureau found that a half-million U.S. women and girls underwent or were at risk of undergoing FGM.

Congress banned FGM years ago, but a judge recently ruled that only states had the right to regulate it. Stepping up, Sen. Karen Keiser, D-Kent, and Rep. Shelley Kloba, D-Kirkland, sponsored bans in their respective chambers. The House bill was significantly better because it made FGM a felony. But neither bill made it a crime for parents to take their daughter out of state or country “on vacation” to get the procedure.

Read more here.

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