2018 CEDAW PSWG UK Intersex NGO Report

2018-CEDAW-PSWG-UK-NGO-Coalition-Intersex-IGMNGO Report (for PSWG) to the 8th Report of the United Kingdom on the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)

>>> Download: PDF (679 kb)  

Compiled by:
Intersex NGO Coalition UK
IntersexUK • UK Intersex Association
StopIGM.org / Zwischengeschlecht.org

CEDAW Timeline UK 2018-19:  
• Above June 2018 NGO Report provides solid evidence of ongoing IGM practices in the UK.
In July 2018 during the CEDAW 72 Pre-Sessional Working Group, the Committee heard NGOs in a private meeting >>> Joint Intersex PSWG NGO Statement 23.07.2018 (PDF):

As an NHS surgeon says, “[...] we remain happy to undertake clitoral reduction surgery [...] Until such time as there is a change in the law, parents will continue to have the right to decide [...]” [5]

CRC [6] recognised IGM in the UK as a harmful practice in 2015, seconded by CRPD [7] [8] in 2017. However, to this day the Government fails to act.
To this day, the UK denies these serious human rights violations, but tries to misrepresent IGM as a “health care” or “gender  identity” issue instead.
This misrepresentation is also evident in the State report. [9]

The Committee then drafted the List of Issues (LOI) with questions for for the UK, which include a good questions on intersex and IGM under CEDAW art. 5 “harmful practices” (CEDAW/C/GBR/Q/8, para 8):

Discriminatory gender stereotypes and harmful practices


8. The report indicates that in 2015 the State party introduced a number of provisions to strengthen the Female Genital Mutilation Act in order to help break down barriers to prosecution (para. 183). Please provide information on the extent to which these changes to the law have facilitated the prosecution of female genital mutilation cases in the State party. What progress has been made following the introduction of a mandatory reporting duty, which requires regulated health-care and social-care professionals, as well as teachers, to report to the police all “known” cases of female genital mutilation in girls under the age of 18 years? Please provide information on the progress made to provide medical and psychosocial support to women and girls who are victims of female genital mutilation. Please provide data on the number of surgical and other procedures that have been undertaken on intersex children under the age of 18 years in the State party.

In November 2018 the UK (non-)answered to the LOI as follows (CEDAW/C/GBR/Q/8/Add.1, para 46):

Intersex children

46.   Issues faced by people who are living with variant sex characteristics is an emerging policy area for Government. UK Government has announced its intention to publish a call for evidence on these issues. The evidence gathered from this exercise will inform the Government’s next steps in this area. UK Government is aware of some calls from the sector to ban the practice of medical interventions on minor’s sex characteristics.

In January 2019 NGOs will have another possibility to submit NGO reports.
On Monday 25 February 2019 NGOs will have another possibility to brief the Committee in both public and private NGO meetings.
On Tuesday 26 February the human rights record of the UK will be examined in Geneva during the 72nd CEDAW session, hopefully followed by yet another severe reprimand for IGM practices for the UK after the Session!

>>> Full Chronology CEDAW UK 2018-19

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