Migration flows of women from Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting practicing countries have generated a need for data on women potentially affected by Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting. This paper presents enhanced estimates for foreign-born women and asylum seekers in Italy in 2016, with the aim of supporting resource planning and policy making, and advancing the methodological debate on estimation methods.
The estimates build on the most recent methodological development in Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting direct and indirect estimation for Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting non-practicing countries. Direct estimation of prevalence was performed for 9 communities using the results of the survey FGM-Prev, held in Italy in 2016. Prevalence for communities not involved in the FGM-Prev survey was estimated using to the ‘extrapolation-of-FGM/C countries prevalence data method’ with corrections according to the selection hypothesis.
It is estimated that 60 to 80 thousand foreign-born women aged 15 and over with Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting are present in Italy in 2016. We also estimated the presence of around 11 to 13 thousand cut women aged 15 and over among asylum seekers to Italy in 2014–2016. Due to the long established presence of female migrants from some practicing communities Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting is emerging as an issue also among women aged 60 and over from selected communities. Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting is an additional source of concern for slightly more than 60% of women seeking asylum.
Reliable estimates on Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting at country level are important for evidence-based policy making and service planning. This study suggests that indirect estimations cannot fully replace direct estimations, even if corrections for migrant socioeconomic selection can be implemented to reduce the bias.