Breast Ironing or ‘Breast Flattening’ is the act where young teenage girls’ breasts are ironed, rubbed, and maybe punched down with the use of rigid or hot items towards the breasts to vanish or retard the maturing of the breasts completely. It is accepted that by doing out this act, young teenage females will be safe from any type of sexual harassment, rape, abduction, and early forced marriage and should be kept in training.
Similar to Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), Breast Ironing is a deleterious ethnic practice and is child abuse. White-Collars functioning with youngsters and young people should be able to recognize the signs and symptoms of females who are in danger or have gone through breast ironing. Likewise, Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), breast ironing is categorized as physical abuse.
The UN states that Breast Ironing influenced 3.8 million females around the globe and has been recognized as one out of five below reported offenses referring to gender-based violence. The tradition uses huge stones, a mallet, or flat instruments like a spatula that have been hot over the red-hot hard rock like coal to flatten by pressure the breast tissue of females as young as 9 years old. The one who is from the higher class can go for an elastic belt to compress the breasts to prevent them from developing.
Mutilation is an ethnic act from Cameroon outline to make teenage females look less ‘feminine’ and to put off undesired masculine attention, sexual harassment, pregnancy. The act is commonly practiced by ancestors, 58% of the flow by the birth giver. In numerous matters, the abusers think they are performing something beneficial for their girl, by retarding the consequences of adolescence so that she can continue her schooling, instead of getting married.
There is no particular law all over the UK for Breast Ironing, but it is a formation of Bodily Abuse and if white-collar are bothered for a child may be in danger or tolerating Notable Hurt they must perform in line with assessing the necessity and supplying aid. Regional officials should evaluate their internal Violence against Females and young Girls’ strategic plan and make sure it considers breast ironing as a part of gender-based violence.
The rights of females are expressed by different universal and zonal instruments including:
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights;
The United Nations Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women;
The Convention on the Rights of the Child;
The African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights;
Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa.
All these above highlight the right for females to live free from gender bias, free from maltreatment, to live with respect, and with physical integrity.
The female usually considers that the act is being performed out for herself better, and she will frequently stay hushed. Young pubescent females mostly aged between 9 – 15 years old and from performing groups are more in danger of breast ironing.
Breast ironing is a widely-known secret among the young female and birth giver. Often the father of the female is totally not aware. Some signs that a young female has gone through breast ironing are as below stated:
Behavior is not usual after non-appearance from education including mental stress, depression, anxiety, aggression, and more.
Unwillingly going through medical examinations;
Some young females may ask for assistance, but maybe unclear regarding the issue due to awkwardness or scare;
Scared of affecting physical activities due to hurts seen or bandages being noticeable.
WHERE IS IT PRACTICED?
Breast ironing is practiced in the zone of Cameroon and has been reported in Guinea-Conakry, Benin, Chad, Togo, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Zimbabwe, and Ivory Coast.
Health consequences of Breast Ironing!
The tools which are used during the act of breast ironing like, spoon/broom, stones, grinding substance, breast band, leaves, etc. merged with not sufficient aftercare, young females are revealed to have health dangers. Breast ironing is hurting and violates a young girl’s bodily integrity. It exposes girls to multiple health issues such as cancer, tissue damage, no symmetry of the breasts, abscesses, itching, and discharge of milk, infection, cysts, breast infections, severe fever, and even the total disappearance of single or both breasts.
This type of mutilation not only has negative health issues for the females but frequently shows, pointless when it comes to discouraging teenage sexual acts as per CAME Women and Girls. The act not only results in a child’s bodily integrity but also their social and psychological welfare.
WHAT TO DO IF WORRIED ABOUT BREAST FLATTENING OR BREAST IRONING?
If you are anxious that a female is in danger of breast flattening, a mention must be made to the regional child services team. If you are bothered that the female is at instant risk, consult the cops by calling 999. You should also consult the Foreign and Commonwealth Office if the female has been taken in any foreign country:
Telephone: 020 7008 1500, From overseas: +44 (0)20 7008 1500
LEGISLATION DIRECTING BREAST IRONING MUST INCLUDE THE BELOW FACTORS:
- Legislation should distinctly and particularly censure the activity of breast ironing;
- Legislation should set up and fund schooling and citizen awareness programs about the outcome of breast ironing;
- Legislation should encourage substitution means prohibiting pregnancies eat early age through schooling sex education curriculum and groups outreach awareness;
- Legislation should force a task upon medical suppliers and academicians to register any case of breast ironing to social duty providers and child protection organizations;
- Legislation should permit courts to issue security orders upon application by a third party person or agency on behalf of the female. This security order should consist of an ex parte security order for girls in danger of breast ironing or in the procedure of breast ironing;
- Legislation should also supply for the security of younger female siblings of victims, as these siblings are frequently in danger of being subjected to breast ironing.
- Violation of security orders should be penalized;
- Legislation should supply facilities for victims such as legal, medical, and various types of rehabilitation facilities; and
- Legislation and various activities that are abiding this deleterious act, such as sexual attack and harassment, must be amended or abolished with the help of law.
“EVEN THE VICTIM IS SOMEONE’S DAUGHTER, SISTER, SAVE GIRL CHILD”
Author(s) Name: Rachana Sandeep Phulsundar (P.E.S Modern Law College, Pune)