Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Houston has publicly come forward with a fellow house representative to denounce female genital mutilation and so-called "vacation cutting season" in the hopes of getting President Barack Obama and federal agencies to take steps to fight the practice here and abroad.

In a press statement released on Thursday, the congresswoman thanked U.S. Representative Joe Crowley (D-NY), female genital mutilation survivor and activist Jaha Dukureh, plus international human rights organization Equality Now for devising this new call to action.

Dukureh tells her story of being mutilated as an infant in Gambia, finally making it to the United States at the age of 15 just a decade ago. She escaped a forced marriage there and fled to Atlanta where she currently resides.

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