Throughout this knowledge module, reference to certain provisions or sections of a piece of legislation, part of a legal judgment, or aspect of a practice does not imply that the legislation, judgment, or practice is considered in its entirety to be a good example or a promising practice.

Some of the laws cited herein may contain provisions which authorize the death penalty. In light of the United Nations General Assembly resolutions 62/14963/16865/206, and 67/176 calling for a moratorium on and ultimate abolition of capital punishment, the death penalty should not be included in sentencing provisions for crimes of violence against women and girls.

Other Provisions Related to Domestic Violence LawsResources for Developing Legislation on Domestic Violence
Sexual Harassment in Sport Tools for Drafting Sexual Harassment Laws and Policies
Immigration Provisions Resources for developing legislation on sex trafficking of women and girls
Child Protection Provisions Resources on Forced and Child Marriage
Other provisions related to dowry-related and domestic violence laws
Related Tools

Drafting the legislative preamble for a law against FGM

Last edited: February 25, 2011

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The legislative preamble sets the stage for the entire piece of legislation. The following elements are important to a strong and inclusive legislative preamble:

  • A statement that legislation should be comprehensive and criminalize all forms of violence against women.  (See: UN Handbook, 3.1.2.)

“All women, regardless of class, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, income, culture, educational level, age and religion, enjoy the basic rights inherent to the human person, and are ensured the opportunities and facilities to live without violence, preserve their physical and mental health and their moral, intellectual and social improvement.” (Article 2)

  • A statement that all forms of FGM are forms of violence against women and girls.
  • A statement that FGM is a form of child abuse.
  • A statement that no customary or religious justifications shall be considered to justify FGM in any form. (See: UN Handbook 3.1.5; Convention on the Rights of the Child)
  • A statement that the state has the duty to prevent FGM, to investigate and prosecute cases of FGM, to investigate cases of imminent FGM, to protect potential victims, to punish perpetrators of FGM, and to give support to survivors of FGM.