Female genital mutilation discussed in police conference in Sheffield
Police officers and partner agencies met in Sheffield to raise awareness of female genital mutilation.
The practise involves the removes part or all of the external female genitalia for non-medical reasons.
While it is thought that it predominantly takes place outside the UK, police believe it is a 'vastly' under-reported crime.
The event brought together charities, police officers, health workers and local authority agencies to understand the warning signs of the crime.
It also explored what each agency can do to identify potential victims and support affected communities.
Detective Sergeant Suzanne Bluck said: “We all have a role to play when it comes to safeguarding children and adults and this crime is still considered so taboo that we must all work together to raise awareness of this issue and protect young girls from this horrific and barbaric act of violence.”
It is also an offence for anyone to carry out female genital mutilation in the UK, or to help and enable someone else to carry it out - even if the victim is taken to a country where the practise is legal.
If convicted, perpetrators can face up to 14 years in prison.
Anyone wishing to report concerns about female genital mutilation in South Yorkshire should call 101.
Call the NSPCC helpline on 0800 028 3550, email [email protected]