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Coalition to End Child Marriage in the United States - Application to Join
According to statistics from Unchained at Last, some 248,000 children as young as 12 were married in the U.S. between 2000 and 2010. Therefore, Unchained At Last and Equality Now are co-convening a National Coalition to End Child Marriage in the United States that brings together organizations and individuals working toward passage of federal legislation to help end child marriage in the U.S.

The mission of the Coalition is to end marriage below the age of 18 within the United States and to repeal loopholes and exceptions that may promote child marriage. The Coalition will advocate for a national age of 18 as the minimum age of marriage, without exception.

The Coalition will pursue various approaches, including passing or amending federal legislation that:
● Closes the legal loophole that currently permits children of any age to petition for a foreign spouse or fiance(e) or to be the beneficiary of a spousal or fiance(e) visa.
● Removes the statutory rape exception: Amend 18 USC 2243 to remove the marriage exception to the federal crime of statutory rape of children below the age of 16.
● Ensures that no other federal laws, policies or regulations allows or encourages child marriage.
● Sets a federal standard, if not pass a law, that includes specific language defining marriage under the age of 18 as a human-rights abuse (as already exists in US foreign policy documents and the Girls Not Brides Global Partnership to End Child Marriage (GNB) Mission Statement; see also GNB’s brief, “The Case for a Minimum Age of Marriage”, and Frequently Asked Questions).

Mission Statement available here: https://bit.ly/2QLRLY0
GNB brief - The Case for a Minimum Age of Marriage of 18: https://bit.ly/2DgINiE
Frequently Asked Questions available here: https://bit.ly/2DhFDeN

● Gives incentives to states to set a minimum marriage age of 18 without exception

All organizations, decision makers, activists, advocates, survivors and allies, including Girls Not Brides members, who are committed to ending child marriage in the United States and who are in agreement with the Coalition’s mission are invited to join the National Coalition.
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