Parliamentary Secretary for Reforms and Equality Rebecca Buttigieg announced on World Children’s Day (Monday 20th November 2023) that testing for virginity will be made illegal in Malta.
Addressing a press conference, Buttigieg revealed that the law will be applied to not just the person committing virginity testing but also anyone who assists in the practice, even parents.
The Parliamentary Secretary said that this discriminatory practice takes place under the false impression that a person can determine whether a girl or woman has had sexual relations. There is no scientific basis for such tests, Buttigieg said.
The punishment could entail between one to five years in jail for who helps, encourages, advises, incites, acquires the means for or forces the testing.
The law will be tabled in parliament as violence based on gender, and will prevent such practices from taking place on the island due to them not being illegal up until this point.
This meant that young girls could be tested for virginity no matter their age, with the law seeking to remove the practice entirely.