The tragedy of a baby boy from Oldham who bled to death after a ritual circumcision raises major concerns for everyone working to safeguard children.
Who is responsible for protecting children at risk of harm from Unnecessary Male Circumcision and what action can professionals take to avoid that risk?
A groundbreaking conference at Keele University in July will provide a space for professionals to engage with the complex issue of reducing the risks associated with Unnecessary Male Circumcision.
Delegates from child protection, health, equality and diversity, human rights, medical ethics and legal backgrounds will gather at the conference to explore how we can prevent more boys from being unnecessarily damaged by the practice.
The Oldham death which will now be the subject of a manslaughter trial later this year; an Oxford report revealing that 45% of circumcisions at an Islamic school led to complications; and research from the charity NORM-UK revealing that as many as 9 out of 10 therapeutic circumcisions could be avoided are just three reasons why the taboo subject of Unnecessary Male Circumcision is now receiving greater attention from the public and professionals alike.
In some areas, such as Bristol, the public sector is working with circumcising communities to increase the number of non-therapeutic procedures carried out in medical settings while in other areas, healthcare professionals have so far resisted calls to use local healthcare settings to provide a medically unnecessary service.
There are also growing concerns that the unequal rights of boys and girls in the UK to be protected from unnecessary genital cutting, could compromise local, national and international initiatives to work with circumcising communities to protect girls from female genital mutilation.
All of these complex issues will be addressed through a series of presentations, question and answer sessions, discussions and facilitated problem-solving workshops at the Keele conference.
The “How To Prevent Unnecessary Male Circumcision” one-day workshop and mini-conference is hosted by the charity Genital Autonomy on Thursday 26th July 2012 at Keele University, Staffordshire.