On March 10, 2016, Sahiyo Co-founder Mariya spoke at the New England School of Law for the event: Human Rights Day Panel: A Poignant Discussion on Female Genital Mutilation. Prior to the beginning of the event, the panel organizers played the Hindustani Times news report FGM: India’s Dark Secret to provide context that FGM/C is more global issue than previously acknowledged. In acknowledging the global nature of FGC, currently, the state of Massachusetts in the United States is in the process of passing legislation criminalizing all forms of FGC with the bill – “An Act Establishing Civil and Criminal Penalties for Female Genital Mutilation” (House Bill H1530; Senate S1116).
Other speakers on the panel included members of the Massachusetts FGM Task Force who have been diligently working on the FGC issue for number of years. These members included Katie Donahue Cintolo, Women’s Bar Association and Susan McLucas, director of Sin Saunuman (Health Tomorrow) organization. Professor Dina Francesca Haynes, a human rights lawyer and professor at the New England School of Law who has worked on hundred of FGC cases also spoke.The event was presented by the International Law Society and sponsored by the Immigration Law Association, the Charles Hamilton Houston Enrichment Program, and the Center for International Law and Policy.