Bradford College law lecturer Shazia Khan and CEO Andy Welsh with the signed pledge to end FGM

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Bradford College has signed a pledge to try and help end FGM on the UN International Day for Zero Tolerance for FGM.

Chief Executive Officer Andy Welsh, accompanied by law lecturer Shazia Khan, signed the pledge along with representatives of Bradford Council, West Yorkshire Police and other community groups at City Hall in Bradford to show no tolerance of FGM.

The signatories to the Bradford Pledge resolve to support the International Day of Zero Tolerance for FGM, work together to fulfil their shared responsibility to safeguard and protect women and girls against FGM and to work to raise awareness of the issue.

Around 20,000 girls in the UK are believed to be at risk of the illegal practice which involves cutting intimate parts of the female body.

FGM has been a criminal offence in the UK since 1985. In 2003 it also became a criminal offence for UK nationals or permanent UK residents to take their child abroad to have female genital mutilation.

Someone found guilty of the offence faces a maximum penalty of 14 years in prison. 

Anyone worried that a women or girl they know has undergone, or is at risk of FGM should contact the NSPCC helpline on 0808 028 3550. Anyone concerned that someone is in immediate danger should call the police on 999. The Foreign Office should be alert of any suspicion a British national has been taken abroad for FGM.

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