The Department for Education’s vision statement, Putting Children First, published in July 2016, set out our commitment to protecting children from all forms of abuse, including female genital mutilation (FGM). The Children and Social Work Bill, currently before Parliament, will help us to deliver the change needed to secure a system that meets children’s needs.
As well as that wide-ranging work on safeguarding, we are currently funding two voluntary sector organisations working to safeguard girls from FGM. The Foundation for Women’s Health Research and Development (FORWARD) and the Midaye Somali Development Network have been allocated a total of over £600,000 for work from December 2016 until March 2018.
On 1 March the Secretary of State made a statement to this House announcing her intention to put Relationships and Sex Education on a statutory footing. There will be a comprehensive programme of engagement, followed by full public consultation, and I know that those campaigning on issues such as FGM will want to contribute to that discussion.