750 new cases of female genital mutilation identified over summer

More than 750 women and girls who had been subjected to Female Genital Mutilation were recorded by the NHS in London over the summer.

More than half the newly recorded cases in the UK were in London, according to the data for July to September released this month by the Heath and Social Care Information Centre.

Photo: Redkaya ┃Shutterstock.com

Photo: Redkaya ┃Shutterstock.com

Female Genital Mutilation, or FGM, is the removal of all or part of the female genitals for non-medical reasons. It is a traditional practice in a number of African countries but it is illegal in the UK.

The law was strengthened in 2003 to prevent girls being taken overseas to undergo FGM. This is thought to be particularly prevalent during the long school summer holidays which have been termed the ‘cutting season’.

The newly recorded cases do not necessarily indicate that the procedure had been recently carried out on these women. Rather it is when the NHS recorded their case. In around half the cases the women reported the FGM themselves.

The country of origin is not known for many of the women. Where origin is recorded, the national figures show the largest number of women is from Africa, particularly East Africa, and especially Somalia.

A previous study by City University and the human rights organisation Equality Now, reported by Urbs, estimated that as many as 87,000 women and girls across the capital may have undergone FGM. Brent and Southwark had the largest number of cases.

FGM

The NHS began collecting quarterly statistics on newly identified cases in 2014. So far the data has been collected largely from acute or hospital trusts, but from October it became mandatory for GP surgeries to also make submission. This may well cause the number of recorded victims to rise in the coming months.

Source data

See also

Thousands of women and girls with FGM living across London

Mapping Londoners: Born in Somalia

 

Over 50% of London babies have mothers born outside the UK

Baby hand

More than half the babies in London last year were born to mothers who were from outside the UK. Data from the Office for National Statistics shows that 58% of new Londoners had mothers who were born outside the UK.  That’s more than double the national rate as across the country non-UK mums account for 27% of births.

In 3 boroughs, Newham, Westminster and Brent, three quarters of the births were to mothers from outside the UK. Since 2004 Newham has had the highest rate in the country for births by women born overseas. Last year it was 76.4%.

The boroughs with the lowest rates of births to mothers born overseas are Havering, Bromley and Bexley. With 28% non UK-born mothers Havering comes closest to the national average.

Mothers born outside UK

National data shows that Poland, Pakistan and India are the most common countries of birth for mothers who are not UK-born. The Polish-born population of the UK has increased 10-fold in the past 10 years.

Of the 127,000 babies born in London in 2014, 25,000 had mothers born in Asia or the Middle East, 20,000 had mothers born in the EU, the majority in newer EU members, which includes Poland, and nearly 17,000 had mothers from Africa.

Across London the most common region of birth for mothers from outside the UK varies from borough to borough. In 6 of the 14 inner London boroughs, including Haringey and Islington, it is the EU. In 10 of the 19 outer London boroughs, including Hillingdon, Harrow, Redbridge and Sutton, it is Asia and the Middle East. For 8 boroughs, including Lewisham, Southwark and Barking and Dagenham, it is Africa.

Source data

See also

Muhammad and Amelia top London’s baby name charts, again

Fewer babies born last year but birth rates vary across city

Our multi-lingual city – English second language for half of primary pupils

Thousands of women and girls with FGM living across London

Adjura had FGM reversal surgery before the birth of her daughter Dfid-Jesiica Lea Wikimedia commons-1

Adjura had FGM reversal surgery before her daughter’s birth. Photo: Jessica Lea/Dfid

As many as 87,000 women and girls living in London may have been subjected to female genital mutilation (FGM). They range from young children to women over 50 and make up 60% of all women with FGM in the UK.

The borough of Southwark is believed to have the highest number of females affected with an estimated 6,900. Brent has 6,024 and there are nearly 5,000 in both Lambeth and Newham.

The data comes from a study by City University and the human rights organisation Equality Now. They found that there are women and girls with FGM in all local authorities across the country but the 10 boroughs with the highest rates were all in London.

FGM

Outside London there is a high incidence in parts of Manchester, Birmingham, Slough, Bristol and Leicester.

Female genital mutilation involves the removal of all or part of the external female genitalia. In many African countries it is traditional practice carried out to control female sexuality and is often linked to the marriageability of girls and family “honour”.


See also

Schools data reveals ethnic mix with fall in proportion of white British pupils

London is more diverse than the UN or Fifa

Fewer babies born last year but birth rates vary across city


Women undergoing FGM suffer severe pain and the procedure can cause shock, haemorrhage, and fatal infections.  Longer term, women suffer can suffer chronic pain.

The study used survey data gathered by Unicef and USAID on the prevalence of FGM in 28 African countries plus Iraq and Yemen. In some countries, particularly in the horn of Africa, such as Somalia, FGM is near universally carried out.

Researchers applied this prevalence data to information from the 2011 census on the females born in these countries living in the UK.

Professor Alison Macfarlane of City University said: “These estimates have limitations as they assume that the women who have migrated are typical of women in their country as a whole which may well not be the case. They are needed as it is difficult to collect data directly about the numbers of women affected.”

The study was funded by the Home Office and the charity The London Trust. The purpose of the study is provide information for professionals to plan support service for women with FGM and safeguard those at risk.

The study also looked at the number of daughters born to women with FGM as these girls may be at particular risk. Researchers estimate that between 2005-13 nearly 31,000 girls were born to mothers with FGM in London.

Female genital mutilation was made criminal offence in the UK in 2003 but to date there has been no successful prosecution.

Source data

London flies flag for West as East leads global growth ranking

aerial river nightLondon is the only western city to feature in the top 30 places for economic and employment growth in a ranking of the 300 largest metropolitan areas in the world.

The rankings are carried out by the respected American think tank, the Brookings Institution for its annual Global Metro Monitor report. Brookings looks at the growth in GDP per capita (the sum of the market value of all goods and services produced divided by the population) in each city, plus the growth in jobs.

The results for 2013-14 show that three quarters of the fastest growing cities are in the developing areas of Asia-Pacific, Central Asia and Eastern Europe. The only city in Western Europe and North America is London, ranked in 26th place.

Position City Country Region
1 Macau China Developing Asia-Pacific
2 Izmir Turkey Eastern Europe/Central Asia
3 Bursa Turkey Eastern Europe/Central Asia
4 Dubai UAE Middle East/Africa
5 Kunming China Developing Asia-Pacific
26 London UK Western Europe

London went up 32 places from last last year with GDP per capita growth of 2.5% and employment growth of 3.6%. London’s traditional rivals in the global cities stakes fared poorly. New York was placed at 176 and Paris at 260.

Other UK cities performed well with Manchester at 60, Edinburgh at 71 and Bristol at 79 in the rankings.

Source data

See also:

London “most influential” global city

NY beats London in economic power