Third-year law student publishes op-ed on female genital mutilation bill

Third-year law student Mary Chaffee publishes op-ed on bill against female genital mutilation introduced in Mass. legislature

Law student Mary Chaffee, '17

Third-year law student Mary Chaffee published an opinion piece in the Cape Cod Times titled, “Protect Girls from Genital Mutilation.”  A bill introduced in the Massachusetts legislature on January 20, 2017, would enact criminal penalties for anyone who performs female genital mutilation (FGM) and would provide services for persons who are victims or are at risk.  The piece appeared in the Times on February 6, the day designated by the World Health Organization as the International Day of Zero Tolerance to FGM.  "The United Nations launched efforts in 2012 seeking a worldwide ban on female genital mutilation," Chaffee explained, but Massachusetts, having condemned FGM only by resolution, is not among the 24 states that have banned the practice expressly.  Chaffee is a registered nurse and member of the FGM Task Force of the Massachusetts Women’s Bar Association.  She has been involved in securing co-sponsors for the bill.

Update: On Feb. 7, Ms. Chaffee's opinion piece was republished in the South Coast Today family of newspapers and online media.