|Sub-Category:||SOCIAL - ABUSED WOMEN & CHILDREN/PORNOGRAPHY|
Background: Female Genital Mutilation is a traditional practice that involves the cutting or removal of parts of healthy external female genital organs for non medical reasons. It is performed for various reasons related to cultural, moral and social acceptability and not condoned or required by any religious teachings It is usually performed on girls between one week old and adolescence. Long term effects may include painful menses, blocked urination, chronic infections, painful intercourse, infertility, ruptures into the rectum and severe difficulty during childbirth, in addition to having a negative effect on girl’s and women’s psychological and psychosexual well-being.
Under the Canadian Criminal Code 268, Aggravated Assault, it is illegal to remove or
mutilate female genitals unless it is medically necessary and performed by a qualified
surgeon. It can also be done if the female has reached 18 years of age and consents to
the procedure. The law also prohibits sending children out of the country to have the
procedure performed and parents or guardians could be prosecuted upon their return to
Canada. The College of Physicians and Surgeons requires Medical Professionals that have
reasonable grounds that FGM has been performed or is considered being performed on
a child under the age of 18, must notify the appropriate child protection authorities.
However, there remains a concern with the role of the Ontario Ministry of Health and
Long Term Care and Community Family Service agencies in upholding the law and
providing education and support for the victims of all ages through social service
There are two hotlines victims can use: S.O.S. Femmes at (416) 759-0138 or 1-800-
387-8603 or the Ontario Human Rights Commission at 1-800-387-9080. However,
these are not generally known.
College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario: Female Genital Cutting (Mutilation).
2001. Retrieved from
Ontario. Ministry of the Solicitor General and Correctonal Services. Memorandum to:
All chiefs of police… 1994. Retrieved from
Ontario Human Rights Commission. Female Genital Mutilation 9FMG): Questions and
answers. Retrieved from www.ohrc.on.ca/en/resources/Guides.
World Health Organization. Female Genital Mutilation. 2010. Retrieved from
RESOLUTION: THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that BPW Ontario reaffirm Resolution 2004-7: Female Genital Mutilation-2004 as noted below.
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that BPW Ontario in 2004 urges the responsible government agencies put in place a program to educate related family services and law agencies about the Genital Mutilation Law;
AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that BPW Ontario in 2004 urges the
Government of Ontario to ensure the Ministry of Community and Social Services to provide access to age appropriate counseling to females who have been circumcised;
AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that BPW Ontario in 2004 urges the Government of Ontario to work with the Government of Canada to ensure that families immigrating to Canada are informed and educated about the Genital Mutilation Law.
AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that BPW Ontario urges the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care extend the education program to physicians and school boards;
AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that BPW Ontario urges the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care to ensure Community Family Services provide access to age and language appropriate counseling for females who have been circumcised;
AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that BPW Ontario urges the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care set up a telephone hot line for women and young girls through local Community Family Services agencies.
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Article ID: 4362