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


Last edited: February 25, 2011

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  • Legislation should ensure that there are child welfare laws and policies to prevent child abuse.
  • Legislation should identify FGM as a form of child abuse.
  • Legislation should mandate that FGM prevention and prosecution are given the same resources as other forms of child abuse. 
  • Legislation should create a child protection system that contains, at a minimum, survivor support, alternative care options, family support services, justice system responses (see order for protection section below) and referral mechanisms. (See: UNICEF Child Protection Strategy for all the components necessary to establish a child protection system; and Child Protection: A handbook for Parliamentarians)
  • Legislation should create child protection protocols for each sector that comes in contact with abuse in the form of FGM, including social services, police and the judicial system. Such protocols can help in creating dialogue about FGM, assessing the level of risk to a child, and in ensuring consistent and appropriate referrals to various services based on the particular circumstances.  

For example, the European Parliament resolution of 24 March 2009 on combating female genital mutilation in the EU (2008/2071(INI), Paras. 28 and 29, state:

The European Parliament:

Calls on the member states to . . . adopt legislative measures to allow judges or public prosecutors to take precautionary and preventive measures if they are aware of cases of women or girls at risk of being mutilated;

Calls on the Member States to implement a preventive strategy of social action aimed at protecting minors without stigmatizing immigrant communities, through public programmes and social services aimed at both preventing these practices (training, education and awareness-raising among the communities at risk) and assisting the victims who have been subjected to them (psychological and medical support including, where possible, free medical treatment to repair the damage); calls also on the Member States to consider, in accordance with child protection legislation, that the threat or risk of being subjected to FGM may justify intervention by the authorities [.]