Forced Marriage e-Library


►  U.S. Marriage Laws & Guidance
►  Foreign Laws & Guidance on Forced Marriage
►  International Instruments Addressing Marriage Rights
►  Publications Addressing Forced & Early Marriage

U.S. Forced-Marriage-related Laws & Guidance

International Day of the Girl Proclamation, President Barack Obama (October 7 2014).

Resolution and Report 112b (condemning forced marriage in the USA), American Bar Association (passed on 12 august 2014).

Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013, Sec. 1207 Prevention of Child Marriage.

7 FAM 1740, U.S. Department of State Foreign Affairs Manual Volume 7 – Consular Affairs.

S-414 – International Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act of 2011 [Introduced on 2/16/2011];  S-987 – International Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act of 2010 [Defeated];  HR-2103, International Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act of 2009 [Defeated].

Guide to Establishing the Asylum Eligibility of Victims of Human Trafficking and Forced Marriage, World Organization for Human Rights USA (2011).U.S. State Laws and Guidance

Julia Alanen, Table: Forced Marriage Laws of the U.S. States and Territories (October 20, 2011).

Hannah Cartwright, Global Justice Initiative, Table: Minimum Legal Age for Consent to Marriage and Sex in the 50 United States (August 21, 2011).

Tahirih Justice Center, Criminal Laws Addressing Forced Marriage in the United States (November 2011).

Marriage Laws of the Fifty States, District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, Cornell University Law School, Legal Information Institute.

State Laws Regarding Marriages Between First Cousins, National Conference of State Legislatures.

Laws of the Fifty States, District of Columbia and Puerto Rico Governing the Emancipation of Minors, Cornell University Law School, Legal Information Institute.

Alone Without A Home: A State-by-State Review of Laws Affecting Unaccompanied Youth, National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty and the National Network for Youth (2012).

Foreign Laws & Guidance on Forced Marriage

Istanbul Convention, at Article 37 (entered into force on 1 August 2014).The Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence, at Article 37 (12 April 2011).Worldwide Ages of Consent, Avert: Averting HIV and AIDS (U.S. State laws on minimum lawful age to consent to engage in sexual relations).

Forced Marriage and Learning Disabilities: Multi Agency Practice Guidelines, The Ann Craft Trust in partnership with the UK’s Forced Marriage Unit (2010).

United Kingdom, Forced Marriage (Civil Protection) Act of 2007. PDFUnited Kingdom, Our Two Year Strategy, Forced Marriage Unit, Foreign & Commonwealth Office, May 2007.

United Kingdom, Dealing With Cases of Forced Marriage: Practice Guidance for Health professionals, 1st Ed. (2007).

The Republic of India, The Prohibition of Child Marriage Act (2006).Forced Marriages in Council of Europe Member States: A Comparative Study of Legislation and Political Initiatives, Directorate General of Human Rights for the Council of Europe (2005).

United Kingdom, Multi-Agency Practice Guidelines: Handling Cases of Forced Marriage, 1st Ed. (2014).United Kingdom, “What We Can Do to Help,” Forced Marriage Unit, Foreign & Commonwealth Office.

United Kingdom, Forced Marriage: A Wrong Not a Right. Foreign and Commonwealth Office Consultation.United Kingdom, Forced Marriage: A Survivor’s Guidebook, 1st Ed. (2013).

International Instruments Addressing Marriage Rights

Position Statement on Forced Marriage, International Federation of University Women (2015).UN CEDAW and CRC Reccommendations on Minimum Age of 
Marriage Laws Around the World, Equality Now (November 2013).

Expert paper prepared by Cheryl Thomas, Director, Women’s Human Rights Program, The Advocates for Human Rights, Minnesota, USA, Forced and Early Marriage: A Focus on Central and Eastern Europe and Former Soviet Union Countries with Selected Laws from Other Countries, United Nations Division for the Advancement of Women, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, Expert Group Meeting on good practices in legislation to address harmful practices against women, United Nations Conference Centre, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (25 to 28 May 2009).
Forced marriages and child marriages, Council of Europe, RES 1468 (2005).Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), Fact Sheet No. 23: Harmful Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and Children, p.8, Early marriage and dowry.

The Convention on Consent to Marriage, Minimum Age for Marriage, and Registration of Marriages, UN General Assembly, 7 November 1962, 521 U.N.T.S. 231, entered into force Dec. 9, 1964.Universal Declaration of Human Rights, proclaimed by United Nations General Assembly Resolution 217A (III) on 10 December 1948, at art. 16. There are 375 different translations of UDHR available.

Publications Addressing Forced & Early Marriage

Julia Alanen, Custom or Crime?: Crafting a Competent Framework to Combat Forced Marriage, American Journal of Family Law (Forthcoming 2016) (Part III of a four-part series).

Julia Alanen, Custom or Crime?: Catalysts and Consequences of Forced Marriage, 29 American Journal of Family Law 227 (Winter 2016) (Part I of a four-part series).

Cynthia Helba et al, Report on Exploratory Study Into Honor Violence Measurement Methods, Westat (November 26, 2014) (funded by the Bureau of Justice Statistics).

Julia Alanen, Too Young to Tie the Knot, Vol. 40 Family Law Reporter 49 (October 28, 2014).

Addressing forced marriage in the EU: legal provisions and promising practices, European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (2014).

Alexia Sabbe, Marleen Temmerman, Eva Brems & Els Leye, Forced marriage: an analysis of legislation and political measures in Europe, Crime, Vol. 62 Law and Social Change: An Interdisciplinary Journal 1 (2014).

Renee Kool, Step forward, or forever hold your peace: penalising forced marriages in the Netherlands, Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights (2012).

Lisanne Divine, Create Space for Gender-Peace™, Mohawk Valley Resource Center for Refugees (2012).

Julia Alanen, Shattering the Silence Surrounding Forced and Early Marriage in the United States, Children’s Legal Rights Journal, Vol. 32, No. 2 (Summer 2012).

Debjani Roy, An Introduction to Forced Marriage in the South Asian Community in the United States, Manavi Occasional Paper No. 9 (2011).

Jenni Millbank and Catherine Dauvergne, Forced Marriage and the Exoticization of Gendered Harms in United States Asylum Law, Columbia Journal of Gender and Law, Vol. 19, No. 3, 2011.

Saroj Iyer, Bring forced marriage out of the shadows, Baltimore Sun (October 31, 2011).

Forced Marriage in Immigrant Communities in the United States, Tahirih Justice Center (September 19, 2011).

Michelle Goldberg, Marry – Or Else, Newsweek, September 25, 2011 Edition (The Daily Beast, September 18, 2011).

Lifetime Spiral of Gender Violence, Asia & Pacific Islander Institute on Domestic Violence. [The Spiral is useful in understanding the unique gender-based experiences, norms and vulnerabilities that potentiate and perpetuate the practice of forced and early marriage of women and girls.]

Breaking Vows: Early and Forced Marriage and Girls’ Education, Plan UK (2011).

NSPCC Policy Summary Forced Marriage, National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children.

Chinyelu Nwokolo, PhD, Department of Guidance and Counselling Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nigeria, Counselling Against Early Marriage of the Girl-Child in Anambra State (2011).

Jail for marriage scam brother: Man convicted for plot to sell his disabled sister into marriage, Viewpoint magazine, MENCAP (March/April 2010).

C. Dauvergne and J. Millbank, Forced Marriage as Harm in Domestic and International Law, Modern law Review Vol. 73, Issue 1, pp. 57-88 (January 2010).

Najood Ali and Delphine Minoui, I am Najood, Age 10 And Divorced, Random House, Inc. (2010).

UNFPA, 16 Days of Activism to End Violence Against Women, Fact Sheet on Early Child Marriage.

Máiréad Enright, Choice, Culture and the Politics of Belonging: The Emerging Law of Forced and Arranged Marriage, Modern Law Review, Vol. 72, No. 3, p. 331, May 2009.

Sanghera, J. (2009) Daughters of Shame. London: Hodder & Stoughton Ltd.

Association for Women’s Rights in Development, Selected proceedings from The Right to Choose international symposium on non-consensual marriage (Toronto, Canada – June 2008).

Brandon, J. and S. Hafez (2008) Crimes of the Community: Honour-based Violence in the UK (London: Centre for Social Cohesion).

Khanum, N. (2008) Forced Marriage, Family Cohesion and Community Engagement: National Learning through a Case-study of Luton. Watford: Bartham Press.

Elissa Wall with Lisa Pulitzer, Stolen Innocence: My Story of Growing Up in a Polygamous Sect, Becoming a Teenage Bride, and Breaking Free of Warren Jeffs. HarperCollins (2008).

Forced Marriage as a Crime Against Humanity: Problems of Definition and Prosecution, Journal of International Criminal Justice, Vol. 6, Issue 5, pp. 1013-1032, 2008.

Success on the Ground: Reducing Child Marriage, ICRW, 2007.

Age of Consent Muddles Law on Marriage vs. Rape, Claire Bushey, Womensenews, 7 June 2007.

Ali, A.H. (2007) Infidel – My Life. London: The Free Press.

Ali, M. (2007) Brick Lane. London : Black Swan.

Ahluwalia, K. and Gupta, R. (2007) Provoked: The Story of Kiranjit Ahluwalia. India: Harper Collins.

Mai, M. in collaboration with M. Cuny (2007) In the Name of Honour: A Memoir. London: Virago.

Sanghera, J. (2007) Shame. London: Hodder & Stoughton Ltd.

Alternative Report on the Observance of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights by the Republic of Tajikistan, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, September 2006.

Bride Kidnapping, United Nations Population Fund, 2006.

Bride Theft Rampant in Southern Georgia, Kokhodze, Gulo & Tamuna Uchidze, Institute for War and Peace Reporting, 15 June 2006.

Reconciled to Violence, Human Rights Watch, September 2006.

Youth and Their Well-Being, Richard Mabala, United Nations Conference Center Addis Ababa, June 2006.

UNICEF, Child Protection Information Sheet: Child Marriage (May 2006).

Ruth Gaffney-Rhys, M v. B, A and S (by the Official Solicitor) – Protecting Vulnerable Adults from Being Forced into Marriage, Child and Family Law Quarterly, Vol. 18, No. 3, pp. 445-454, 2006.

Leila with the collaboration of M. Cuny (2006) Married by Forced. London: Portrait.

Campaign on Early Marriage in Yemen: Process and Results, Nisha, Oxfam GB, June 2005.

Report on Forced Marriages and Child Marriages, Committee on Equal Opportunities for Women and Men, Parliamentary Assembly, Council of Europe (20 June 2005).

Forced Marriages in Council of Europe Member States, Rude-Antoine, Edwige, ed., Council of Europe, 2005.

Saira Ahmed, Breaking Free, Metro Books (February 2005).

Child Marriage Fact Sheet, Press Release, United Nations Population Division, 2005.

An Absence of Choice: The Sexual Exploitation of North Korean Women in China, Norma Kang Muico, Anti Slavery International, 2005.

UNICEF Supports Fight to End Marriage by Abduction in Ethiopia, UNICEF Communications Section.

Early Marriage: A Harmful Traditional Practice, UNICEF, 2005.

Evaluation report on General Situation of Women in Afghanistan, Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission, 2005.

Kidnapping for Marriage (ala kachuu) in a Kyrgyz Village, Russell Kleinbach, Mehrigiul Ablezova & Medina Aitieva, Central Asian Survey, June 2005, 192-193.

Souad in collaboration with M. Cuny (2005) Burned Alive. London: Bantam.

Muhsen, S. (2004) Sold: One Woman’s True Account of Modern Slavery. London: Time Warner Paperbacks.

Know the Facts, International Center for Research on Women, 2003.

Too Young to Wed, International Center for Research on Women, 2003.

Uzbekistan – Bride Kidnapping, Alena Aminova, Network of East-West Women, 18 August 2003.

Naomi Seiler, Is Teen Marriage a Solution?, Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), (April 2002).

UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre, Early Marriage: Child Spouses, Innocenti Digest, No. 7 (March 2001).

A Choice by Right, Working Group on Forced Marriage, June 2000.

Forced Marriage: The Overseas Dimension, Foreign & Commonwealth Office, 4 Aug 2000.

Boyne, S. (1998) Sold into Marriage: One Girl’s Living Nightmare. Dublin: O’Brien Press.

Hadis Alemayhu, Yelem Ja’at’.  (A story that poignantly describes the life long implications of early marriage as practiced in Northern Ethiopia. The story captures the horrors of marital intercourse and childbirth for a pre-pubescent girl, in the Gojjam region, married under the guise of Madego (bringing up).)

GJI conducts research and compiles resources for advocates engaged in preventing and responding to cases of forced and early marriage in the United States. The information in GJI’s e-Library is provided for general information only, is not intended to be legal advice, and may change without notice. Questions involving interpretation of law should be addressed to an attorney licensed in the relevant jurisdiction.