Honour Based Violence / Female Genital Mutilation
So-called ‘honour-based’ violence is abuse and encompasses crimes which have been committed to protect or defend the honour of the family and/or community, including:
- Forced marriage (FM)
- Female genital mutilation (FGM)
- Other practices such as breast ironing.
Due to their own cultural upbringing and beliefs, perpetrators of HBV (often family members) may not recognise these situation as abusive and believe that they are doing what is ‘right’ or ‘best’ for their child; for example, they may believe it is essential for a girl to undergo FGM to get married or that ‘breast flattening’ will protect them from unwanted sexual advances.
Regardless of the motivation, it is still abuse and our responsibility as childcare professionals is to put the welfare and protection of the child first. Don’t let personal relationships, assumptions or cultural beliefs prevent you from acting. If you have concerns for a child or young person and you would like to discuss them, you can contact the Education Safeguarding Service for support and advice.