Forced marriage law is failing

Only one in 30 suspected forced marriages in England is leading to a prosecution.

In the past seven years 8,170 cases of suspected forced marriages were identified by the government’s forced marriage unit. There have only been 395 referrals to the Crown Prosecution Service since 2010, however, of which 268 prosecutions were completed, according to the CPS’s violence against women and girls reports.

During the same period, about 1,250 forced marriage protection orders were issued to protect girls and women at risk, and assist with repatriating victims. Last year 246 were issued, up from 217 in 2015.

Manchester, Luton, Leicester and Bradford are the UK’s forced marriage “hotspots” where the most orders have been issued, according to a freedom of information request.

6 thoughts on “Forced marriage law is failing

  1. For ‘forced’ marriage, the damning word is replaced by ‘arranged’, but in essence it is still culturally institutionalised rape. Psychological, emotional, family and peer pressure, fear of retribution or exclusion, are all used to coerce terrified targets into silent submission. It is rape, rape, rape. Any and all relationships can only be truly genuine, and therefore mutually consensual, in the absence of all external influences, especially of immediate and extended family. As with the CSE in Rotherham (and as ongoing in Sheffield) the authorities are hiding behind the fear of being labelled racist as a pathetic excuse for the lacklustre response.

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    • Totally agree with everything you say. There is also the widespread and serious problem of FGM and the shameful lack of prosecutions for this abominable disfigurement of young girls, which can have a life-long effect,
      But don’t forget we’re all so enriched by multiculturalism!

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      • Thank you Hotspot. Of course, if there was no coercion, there would be no arranged marriage and no children. However, you do raise a good point about coercion being imposed when a couple decide that continuing any relationship is futile. The tension is unavoidably projected into the family atmosphere and detected by the children, from whom there can be nothing hidden. Here I will make a comment that may seem controversial. Keeping warring couples together has an unavoidable and adverse effect upon the emotional and psychological wellbeing of the children, and to perpetuate this, under the pressure of coercion, is nothing short of child abuse. Arranged marriage, and ‘arranged’ staying together, is indicative of a culture that values imagined family image and pride above the human rights and respect for those individuals affected.

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