Dexter returns to champion cause of Female Genital Mutilation
Colnbrook’s Cllr Dexter Smith has spoken out about female genital mutilation (FGM) and forced marriage in Slough.
Cllr Smith – silent during the recent flooding in Colnbrook – has grabbed headlines in the local newspapers this week over the issue of FGM.
Cllr Smith raised concerns that police are not doing enough during a meeting of Slough Borough Council’s Scrutiny Committee on Tuesday.
Thames Valley Police Chief Constable Sara Thornton was on hand to answer questions along with Superintendent Simon Bowden of Slough Police.
Slough’s Overview and Scrutiny Committee seeks to achieve greater accountability, efficiency and transparency in decision-making. It meets every six weeks.
Thornton accepted that very few cases are recorded in the area and said that Thames Valley is prioritising awareness among staff of both issues in its delivery plan for the next twelve months.
She also said that a new Policing Bill is expected to make forced marriage a criminal offence later this month.
A change to reporting is also on the cards. Currently forced marriage is recorded along with other sorts of crime like abduction or threats.
A campaign to spread awareness of female genital mutilation (FGM) in Slough was launched a year ago to address the lack of action in the borough. ‘Slough Fronts Up FGM’ aimed to bring together agencies, including the police, to work towards safeguarding specific communities at risk.