Opportunity Details

Children & Youth Education

Age Minimum (with Adult): 8+, Minimum Age:15+

End Child Marriage in the State of California and all other States

Many Americans believe “Child marriage only happens in other countries.” Think again.

Did you know Child marriage is an open secret and legal in 46 U.S. states? Each year in the United States, children are forced and coerced into marriages. In fact, approximately 248,000 girls were married in the years 2000-2010 in the United States. The consequences of early marriage pervade a victim’s life for years after the marriage begins. Child marriage adversely affects the victim’s health, education, and employment opportunities. Additionally, more than 89% of child marriage victims often become victims of domestic abuse and abandonment. The lost childhood creates a perpetual loop of entrapment for victims as education and financial independence are the tools they need to acquire the resources to free themselves from a forced or coerced marriage. In addition, victims of child marriage face tremendous challenges in obtaining access to social service and access to legal support in obtaining a divorce.

Child Marriage, a formal marriage or informal union where one or both parties is under the age of 18, is defined as a human rights abuse by the Department of StateUNICEF, and Human Rights Watch

The American Medical Association has called for an end to Child Marriage stating “Child marriage is associated with higher rates of sexually transmitted infections, early pregnancies, divorce, and intimate partner violence, infant and maternal mortality than women married at age 21.”

Minors in unwanted or abusive marriages suffer social isolation from their support networks like school, friends, and family, which contributes to their poor mental health.

Young women and girls ages 16-19 face intimate partner violence victimization rates almost three times the national average.

Your voice is needed. California does not have an “age floor” for Child Marriage which means girls of any age can be married to adult men.

Do we want to live in a world that allows for the legal marriage of children?

We may be mostly confined to our homes, but our ability to shape the world we want to live in remains. We encourage you to participate in our Action Network digital letter-writing campaign. Act now to inform California leaders and legislators that we must end Child Marriage. https://cacoalitiontoendchildmarriage.org/advocacy/

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Express Interest

Volunteers needed through 3/26/2022

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