Forced Marriage / Honour Based Violence

  

This project is aimed at women and young girls who may be at risk or are
experiencing issues including forced marriage and honour based violence.
The project is to help support women to be safe and have stability in their
lives, improve health, wellbeing and freedom from discrimination.

WHAT IS FORCED MARRIAGE?

A forced marriage is a marriage conducted without the valid consent
of one or both people and pressure or abuse is used. It is an abuse
of human rights and can not be justified on any religious and cultural
grounds.

A forced marriage is when you feel that you can not say ‘no’ to the
marriage. Both men and women, of different ages, communities
and backgrounds can be victims of a forced marriage. 
     
It is important to remember that forced marriage is not a ‘cultural or religious’ issue,
it can be experienced by people from different cultural groups, and is condemned by
every major religion. It is important not to confuse ‘forced’ marriage with ‘arranged’
marriage.

An arranged marriage is when the families are involved in helping to choose
the marriage partner, but it is the choice of both the bride and groom whether they
want to get married or not.

The line between ‘arranged’ and ‘forced’ marriage may tend to blur where: 

purple_flower.jpg Marriage is discussed, but with no mutual acceptance or rejection of ideas
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BUT, FEW WOULD CONTEST THAT A MARRIAGE IS FORCED WHERE:

purple_flower.jpg Demands to accept a marriage proposal are accompanied by physical, mental and/or emotional pressure and violence.
purple_flower.jpg The people concerned are manoeuvred into going through the marriage ceremony against their will.

 

WHAT IS HONOUR BASED VIOLENCE?

As defined by the police; ‘A crime or incident which has or may have been committed
to protect or defend the honour of the family and or community.

This could include assault false imprisonment; murder; disfigurement; enforced suicide;
kidnap or any form of crime motivated by honour.

WARNING SIGNS 

Young people rarely feel able to disclose their feelings about forced marriage. However
there are some warning signs that may indicate the possibility of an impending forced
marriage:

purple_flower.jpg Extended absence from school/college, truancy, drop in academic performance, low motivation, excessive parental restriction and control of movements, and history of siblings leaving education early to marry.
purple_flower.jpg Poor attendance in the workplace, poor performance, parental control of income and limited career choices.
purple_flower.jpg Evidence of self-harm, treatment for depression, attempted suicide, social isolation, eating disorders or substance abuse.
purple_flower.jpg Evidence of family disputes/conflict, domestic violence/abuse or running away from home.

WHAT IF YOU THINK IT'S HAPPENING TO YOU?

If you are feeling pressurised into marrying someone, or you feel that you have no say
in the decision, you may be being forced into a marriage. Whether the marriage is taking
place abroad or here in the UK, it is important to understand that you have the right to
say no, and that support is available.

KNOW YOUR RIGHTS

Everyone in the UK has the right to choose who they marry. Whatever your religion,
whatever your family says, however old you are and whatever your sexuality, you have
this fundamental right. The law in Britain will help protect you against a forced marriage

A young person demonstrating any of the above may not be necessarily at risk, but if
you feel concerned about a potential forced marriage you should contact help at:

purple_flower.jpg Foreign & Commonwealth Forced Marriage Unit: 0207 008 0151 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm) or email fmu@fco.gov.uk where confidential advice and support can be provided .
purple_flower.jpg For out of hours emergencies, please telephone: 0207 008 1500 and ask to speak to the Global Response Centre

LEGISLATION ON FORCED MARRIAGE

The Anti-social Behavior, Crime and Policing Act 2014 makes it a criminal offence to
force someone to marry This includes:

  1. Taking someone overseas to force them to marry (whether or not the forced
    marriage takes place)
  2. Marrying someone who lacks the mental capacity to consent to the marriage
    (whether they’re pressured to or not)
  3. Breaching a Forced Marriage Protection Order is also a criminal offence
  4. The civil remedy of obtaining a Forced Marriage Protection Order through the
    family courts will continue to exist alongside the new criminal offence, so victims
    can choose how they wish to be assisted
  5. Details of the new law can be found on the Legislation website

LOCAL SUPPORT AND ADVICE:

purple_flower.jpg Luton All Women’s Centre: 01582 416783
purple_flower.jpg Luton Women's Aid: 01582 391856 (Mon-Fri 1000-1700)
purple_flower.jpg Bedfordshire Police Forced Marriage & Honour Based Abuse Unit: 01582 394384 (Mon-Fri 0800-1600)         
purple_flower.jpg Victim Support: 0845 30 30 900

 

OTHER CONTACTS:

Honour Network: 0800 5999 247, www.karmanirvana.org.uk
The Honour Network helpline is a confidential helpline, providing emotional and
practical support and advice for victims and survivors (male and female) of forced
and/or honour based violence and abuse. It provides advice and support to potential
victims, victims in crisis and professional agencies.

FREEDOM APP:

The Freedom Charity founder, Aneeta Prem has developed a smart phone app in
conjunction with the Governments Forced Marriage Unit and the Metropolitan Police.

http://www.freedomcharity.org.uk/

    

Luton All Women’s Centre Forced Marriage Service 
purple_flower.jpg We offer a confidential service.
purple_flower.jpg One to one support.
purple_flower.jpg Advice and advocacy.
purple_flower.jpg Outreach work.
purple_flower.jpg Group Therapy.
purple_flower.jpg Referral to legal advice.
purple_flower.jpg Counselling Service
purple_flower.jpg Outreach work 

Other Services  

We at the Luton All Women’s Centre have wide range of South Asian language speakers. 

We work with 14-16 year olds in schools raising awareness of Forced Marriage and
Honour Based Violence. This is a key tool in educating individuals on the possible risks before they arise.

We also provide training in this subject to a range of agencies via the domestic abuse
multi-agency programme. 
 

 

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01582 416 783  support@lawc.org.uk
Drop-in: Mon – Fri 9:30am – 12:00pm    Appointments:  Mon – Fri 12:00pm – 4:00pm
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