Mission Statement

Who we are

We are the committee of people affected by circumcision (Facharbeitskreis Beschneidungsbetroffener) within MOGiS e.V. People who are adversely affected by surgical intervention on their genitals come together in the committee.

What we aim for

We want politics and society to ostracise all forms of not therapeutically indicated surgical intervention on those unable to give informed consent.

This includes the abolition of § 1631d of the German civil code (introduced in late 2012 after a public debate on the legality of male circumcision) and thus a return to the unlimited right of the child to a non-violent upbringing.

Genital mutilation of all kind should be recognised by society and penalised by law as a violation of the right to physical integrity and sexual self-determination.

One of our objectives is to spread information across all groups in society about the consequences of non-therapeutical intervention on children’s genitals.

We call for the relevant fields of medicine to stop their partial blockade against examining and treating long-term effects of unnecessary surgery on children’s genitals, to start scientific research on these issues and to offer help to people who have been affected als a child.

Because these interventions can lead to health problems and significant sexual impediments, rehabilitation measures must be included in the catalogue of treatments that are covered by statutory health insurance.

We also aim to confront the pathologisation of complication-free conditions of children’s genitals. Examinations and interventions on children’s genitals that are not medically required must be stopped.

What we do

Within the committee, affected people are given an opportunity for exchange about this topic, which many find difficult or impossible in their social or professional surroundings.

Often the committee provides the first opportunity for affected people to openly discuss the genital modifications they suffered in their own childhood and the experience of the resulting consequences.

We spread information on these issues, which still widely remain a taboo, through publications such as our “Zirkumpendium”.

We establish contacts and look for cooperation with organisations that are open towards our values and objectives. In particular this includes human rights groups, medical associations, and also institutions active in sexual education.

We seek to give affected people a voice in the political process, which we try to make possible by contacting decision makers with the aim of participation in political bodies and committees.

How we work together

A constructive and respectful collaboration is important to us.

We are committed to acknowledge and value each other in our exchanges, as a way to build trust.

We do not focus on reprocessing our own stories, and we are very careful about subjecting others to them.

Since we are active in various other networks next to this committee, we are able to quickly gather targeted information from other affected people.

The spectrum of groups we can reach ranges from people affected by religious traditions and people affected by traditional forms of genital mutilation to people who have had to endure interventions on their genitals for dubious “medical” reasons.

Our basic principles and values

It is solely up to the affected people to judge non-therapeutic interventions on genitals.

In our view, the only relevant perspective is that of those affected as a child – who were subjected to surgery on their genitals without medical indication and who have to live with the consequences for the rest of their lives.

The gravity and the implications of such procedures must not be qualified by the intentions or motives of the adults who decided on the intervention.

We consider it a task for all of society to put the right of children to physical and sexual self-determination into force. This will have to involve action across the world – regardless of social, ethnic, religious or political context or of the affected person’s gender.

We also realise that the protection of children, regardless of gender, will not be reached through legal regulation alone. This is why comprehensive information across all social groups about the consequences of non-therapeutic intervention on children's genitals is indispensable.

We believe that there are no easy solutions to such a complex problem and that enforcing children's rights can only be achieved in the long term and on the condition that many social groups work together in a constructive and peaceful way.

In our initiative and our work we stand for the principles of democracy and the rule of law. We resolutely oppose racist, antisemitic, sexist or other discriminatory attitudes.

The principles of this mission statement also apply to our collaborative partnerships. We work with people and initiatives that share our basic principles and values. In cases of doubt, we will only continue to cooperate once our concerns have been resolved.