Friday, July 14, 2017

Michigan Outlaws FGM In Package of Bills Signed By Governor

On July 11, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed a series of bills dealing with female genital mutilation. As summarized by the governor's press release:
The bill package amends various public acts to prohibit and prosecute those who perform female genital mutilation. Specifically, the bills prohibit performing genital mutilation, create criminal penalties for offenders, provide sanctions against healthcare licensees, require increased public education surrounding the topic and extend criminal and civil statutes of limitations.
One of the bills, HB 4636, outlaws FGM and provides:
It is not a defense to prosecution under this section that the person on whom the operation is performed, or any other person, believes that the operation is required as a matter of custom or ritual, or that the person on whom the operation is performed, or that person’s parent or guardian, consented to the operation.
HB 4642 requires the Department of Health and Human Services to:
Develop and administer an educational and outreach program that, at a minimum, informs the public, including members of new immigrant populations to this state that commonly practice female genital mutilation and health care providers, of the health risks and emotional trauma inflicted by the practice of female genital mutilation and the criminal penalties for female genital mutilation.