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Andrew Mitchell MP meets with local organisation to support victims of female genital mutilation

Andrew Mitchell MP has met the Executive Director of Allies Network, a West Midlands based community support organisation established in 2008 which provides culturally sensitive support for those at risk - or have been a victim – of female genital mutilation (FGM).

Allies Network works in partnership with the Ministry of Justice; West Midlands Police; and the Big Lottery Fund to deliver training to professionals from the education and care sector so that they are able to spot early signs of girls who may be at risk of FGM and introduce safeguarding procedures.

Following the meeting, Mr Mitchell said: “One in three women globally have experienced some form of physical or sexual violence. We simply cannot tolerate this. That is why when I was International Development Secretary, ending violence against women and girls around the globe was a top priority for UK aid spending.

“Between 2011 and 2015, UK Aid supported over five million girls in developing countries to gain an education and, alongside the private sector, we were able to ensure there were better job opportunities and improved working conditions for the world's poorest and most marginalised women.

“Allies Network is doing crucial domestic work in the West Midlands to combat political and cultural sensitivities which is needed to uncover this horrific form of abuse. I very much look forward to working closely with this organisation in future to combat the prevalence of what is often a hidden crime, and see to it that perpetrators brought to account in court.”

If you are concerned that someone may be at risk, contact the NSPCC helpline on 0800 028 3550 or fgmhelp@nspcc.org.uk. If you are a victim of FGM, you can get help from a specialist NHS gynaecologist or FGM service – ask your GP about services in your area.

Photo: Andrew Mitchell MP, alongside Nura Ali – Executive Director of Allies Network, and Councillor Andrew Hardie.

Andrew Mitchell MP, alongside Nura Ali – Executive Director of Allies Network, and Councillor Andrew Hardie

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