Honeyball’s Weekly Round-Up

Labour Party

New figures emerged last week which revealed over 1,700 women and girls who have been victims of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) have been treated by the NHS since April this year.

This is an astonishing figure and shows this disturbing crime has many more victims than was originally understood. The figures provide the first official data on the numbers of FGM cases seen by the NHS in England.

Broken down, the numbers are even more concerning. In September alone 467 previously unknown FGM victims were treated at NHS trusts across the country.

The data has been produced to inform people about the scale and horrific nature of the crime, and is part of a drive to eradicate FGM on British soil. The figures provide a harrowing narrative to what is a vicious crime. You can read more here.

The outgoing president of the European Commission appeared on the Andrew Marr Show yesterday, where he made it very clear that the UK would have “zero” influence if it voted to leave the European Union.

Jose Manuel Barroso warned Britain would not be able to negotiate with the US and China “on an equal footing” on its own. Cameron has failed to understand much of the country’s relationship with the EU and it was therefore not surprising that Barroso concluded by spelling out clearly, that the free movement of people within the EU was an “essential” principle that could not be changed.

You can see the interview with Barroso here.

A bizarre story appeared last week when it was revealed that Apple and Facebook will pay for female employees to freeze their eggs.

A ‘perk’ of up to £12,000 is being offered to help women employees freeze their eggs in order to allow them to focus on their career at the Silicon Valley companies. On the face of it may appear to be a good natured offer, but actually there’s a far more cynical twist.

Of course, should women choose to, they have the right to freeze their eggs but the idea that they should do so in order for it not to get in the way of their careers is both bizarre and offensive.

The freelance journalist, Dani Garavelli wrote in the Scotsman on Sunday how the ‘back-slapping’ culture of these companies considered this to be the answer to a ‘problem’ faced by most businesses. However, it remains totally distasteful to be offered as some kind of incentive or reward package.

As Garavelli says, they are mostly white 20-something men: “You can picture the high-fiving and backslapping that greeted the light-bulb moment. Someone had a vision of a brave, new world in which the whole, messy disruptive business of reproduction could be passed by.”

You can read more of Garavelli’s view here.