Friday, May 28, 2010

Female circumcision by Aussie doctors

I was really taken aback this morning when listening to the radio to hear that Australian doctors are considering offering female circumcision.

My initial reaction was to be appalled to hear such a thing was being considered here in Australia, rather than in a third world country. However, it is a fact that this practice does occur in Australia – just in some backroom in unhygienic conditions rather than in a hospital or doctors office.

In an article in today’s The West Australian entitled ‘ritual nick’ for girls on agenda it says: “It comes after the bio-ethics committee of the Academy of American Paediatrics suggested “tokenistic surgery” could build trust between hospitals and immigrant groups, save girls from disfiguring surgery in their native country and eventually eradicate female circumcisions.”

This issue has me in a quandary. Is it better for doctors to offer this service to prevent the even worse result of this taking place in some dirty back room? Or will offering this service mean more women are pushed in to this painful and unnecessary procedure? I even have to ask the question, why do some people feel this procedure is the right thing to do?

What do you think?

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