Simran’s take on this…
The rolling out of this law in Great Britain has taken some yrs. We have all heard that this would eventually happen,it takes time for the law to be implemented through govt .policing and court agendas…but we finally have this now thankyou to Jasvinder sanghera and karma Nirvana and a number of other agencies consulted through these processes.
Forced marriage is not seen as ‘forced marriage’ by families where this is dressed as their right to ‘marry their daughter’…. for whatever lucrative reason to fit into their world…examples of this include
1. To curve the ways of their son or daughter to fit into family expectations and rules which punish rather than support .
2. For financial gain in a variety of ways…matching a couple that the family think will benefit the family as a whole or wider family links…. rather than the couple..the aim being to furfill the desires of others rather than the couple.
3. Forced marriage is therefore sometimes called marriage of convinience or dressed up as needing to be within the same clan of the immediate family…. for the gain of others..not necessarily for the the couple..this can add additional pressures on couples to adhere to the needs of others rather than move forward with their own future family ,thought through values etc..
4. Shame and guilt are used on individuals to be married..to maintain th ehonour of the family….and are stated as expectations of the ‘norm’ for individuals in the clan and wider community. These are powerful pressures on individuals laid down to conform .
5. Communitites where forced marriage is practice ( including pressure to marry cousins, coercion to marry within the clan or family,pressure to marry someone from the same caste or community are all examples where forced married may exist)
6. Forced marriage has a very fine line between so called ‘arranged marriage’ where these pressures exist. men and women can sometimes deny that they were pressurized to marry,so the line can be very fine. debate about these 2 being different needs to acknowledge this grey area where couples need support and are often in denial because they accepted and had to make it work…we need to be open to these couples and support their right to choice and be who they want to be.
7. Forced marriage can have many implications for individuals involved,not just those I think about who feel they have no choice but to remain in them, but those who are at hugh risk of harm,including domestic violence, slavery..yes in many cases this is th eimplication,having your rights stripped at every level. Trust is hughly affected.
8. We must never forget that forced marriage is often hidden, that we need to be alert to the possibilities of this happening ( see Karma Nirvana pointers to being alert)
9. If someone is being forced to marry, we can never forget the possibility of the threat to the individual of ending their lives if compliance is had by those who have no fear of murder.
10. Strong message…you can find help if you or your friend or anyone you know..is being forced into a marriage…
11. Never forget the numbers of those affected in uk alone ,never mind in other countries is hugh…you are not alone in wanting to seek help..I hope this law will now allow everyone to realize that..not just the victims, but a strong message to the perpetriators of these crimes..that they are on the look out..the law cannot turn a bllnd eye..neither the courts..neither can individuals who don’t speak English or claim not to know….they all know…and have to know.
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