Landmark case: Female Genital Mutilation

Landmark case: Female Genital Mutilation

As a researcher and psychologist working with female genital mutilation (FGM) since 2014, I am relieved that since 1985 we have had a our first ever conviction. I was asked to come on the news to give my view of this landmark case.

Below is the Verbatim transcript of what was said:

Presenter: “joining me now is psychologist doctor Farah Nadeem, author of the Practitioners Guide to Treating Female Genital Mutilation…er…Dr. Nadeem  thank you so much for coming in to talk to me about this, it’s a barbaric practice, it has been outlawed in this country since 1985, and yet this is the first conviction that we are seeing, just how significant is this case and this ruling?”

Farah: “I think it is extremely significant, I mean, number one I am relieved as a psychologist that is…we’ve got a breakthrough, first breakthrough that’s come forward when it comes to female genital mutilation, now we’ve got (to) establish the extent of it, it makes it real now, it makes FGM real, we know it’s a hidden population element, we know it’s…erm…culturally embedded…erm…I think that’s the reason why it hasn’t come forward before, you know, and that’s something that I’ve spoken about in my book as it being a cultural embedded act”

Presenter: “erm…you know, you work with survivors of FGM, we heard there in Rias report how the CPS described…err…3 year old here and…and just the vulnerability there…erm…they cannot fight back essentially can they?…it’s the worst form of child abuse…”

Farah: “well…it’s the worst kind of a child abuse because the perpetrators are usually the mothers…and that’s what we are dealing with, you know, we have child abuse, yes, but this (is) where the perpetrators are the mothers and…the hardest bit, the next step of work is actually working with (the) psychological aftermath…”

Presenter: “yep…because physical damage is one thing but the long term affects…you work with survivors…what are those long term affects?…must be awful…”

Farah: “Its complex trauma…you know…there’s disocia….dissociation…there is…you know, emotion dis-regulation, there’s flash backs, there’s so many different experiences people have, they have issues in building relationships, you know and…and at times disengagement in therapy as well, because it’s something quite traumatic…that they could either talk about, and sometimes they feel scared to talk about”

Presenter: “Yeah of course…the Home Secretary Sajid Javed has said that FGM is a sickening form of child abuse that leaves innocent young victims with physical and emotional scars that last a lifetime, as you said…you’re taking this further, you’re going to the Commons aren’t you? Later this month…”

Farah: “Yeh…I’m doing…erm…em…I’m having a discussion (in) House of Commons, based on Female Genital Mutilation and it’s based around my book and what we’re aiming to do is actually…erm…build a change for society now, it’s like, okay, in summary what we’ve got, 1985 we have…erm…the awareness for FGM, then, now we have prosecution, now it’s made it real, the next step is the extent of FGM, and th…the real work begins on the psychological aftermath of FGM.”

Presenter: “Still a lot of work to be done Dr. Farah Nadeem, Thank you so much for coming in the studio, Thank you.”

Farah: “Thank you….thank you”


The video of the live feed will be on the press section of the website.

Dr Farah Nadeem


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