State Rep. Peter Lucido, of Shelby Township, testified before the House Law and Justice Committee today in support of his legislation to terminate parental rights for anyone who is convicted for having their child undergo a female genital mutilation procedure.
Female genital mutilation is any procedure performed on girls intended to remove or damage the external genitalia.
“This legislation is about the best interests of a child,” said Lucido, vice chair of the Law and Justice Committee. “Anyone who will allow their child to undergo this inhumane procedure, and is convicted of doing so, needs to be completely accountable.”
Lucido’s bill would seek to terminate parental rights for any parent or guardian convicted under state legislation, pending a separate hearing to determine the child’s best interest.
The committee and the state House passed a bipartisan legislative package last week, prohibiting the procedure while also calling for medical license sanctions, and education programs for law enforcement and health officials. Lucido voted in support of the package.
The legislative package passed this week follows a February incident where two young girls from Minnesota were subjected to the procedure at a southeast Michigan clinic. A Livonia couple was arrested on federal charges in April after performing the procedure afterhours at their medical clinic, while a third individual has been fired from their emergency room doctor position for performing the procedure at the same Livonia clinic.
“We need to take this extra step to protect the children from genital mutilation,” Lucido said. “The legislation we voted on last week addresses so many factors tied to this awful practice, but the best interests of the children must be given a stronger voice. They are the ones who face live long physical and mental issues from the mutilation.”
House Bill 4716 remains under consideration by the Law and Justice Committee.
State Rep. Peter Lucido, of Shelby Township, testifies before the House Law and Justice Committee today in support of his legislation to terminate parental rights for any parent or guardian who is convicted for having their child undergo a female genital mutilation.