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Campaigners welcome new Forced Marriage legislation

12-03-2008 07:13 PM CET | Politics, Law & Society

Press release from: Junaid Bhatti

/ PR Agency: Ballencrieff House
New legilsation to curb forced marriages has been introduced

New legilsation to curb forced marriages has been introduced

The introduction of new legislation to protect victims of forced marriages has been welcomed by charities campaigning to eradicate the practice. Under the new laws individuals and the Police can apply for a Forced Marriage Protection Order which prevents families from seizing passports or intimidating victims into travelling abroad. In addition, the Order could force families to reveal a missing victim’s whereabouts to Police.

Kelly Kaur, who runs the Throughcare Housing and Support charity, has been working with victims of domestic violence and forced marriage for more than a decade. Like other veteran campaigners, she welcomed the government’s new initiative, which threatens those responsible for forced marriages with prison sentences up to two years.

She said: “It is completely unacceptable in this day and age for the continuation of ancient cultural practices that ignore the human rights of individuals. The new legislation is a great leap forward in tackling the issues that we deal with every day. Hopefully, it will now become easier to protect vulnerable individuals from the emotional and physical abuse that goes hand-in-hand with forced marriages.”

Justice minister Bridget Prentice said: "This new law is a powerful tool that will help ensure that no-one is forced into marriage against their will and those already in such marriages will receive protection."

However, Mrs. Kaur had some reservations: “This is a huge victory for our campaign. However, we know that our work will have to continue for the foreseeable future. It could be many years before we succeed in stigmatising forced marriage within the many different communities where it is practiced.”

About Throughcare Housing and Support

Throughcare Housing and Support is a charity project that provides accommodation and support for vulnerable individuals, and has received backing from the Police Domestic Violence Unit, the Crown Prosecution Service as well as local and national government. Throughcare also campaigns to create awareness amongst the community, and has lobbied the government for more robust legislation to assist victims.

The Throughcare initiative is the brainchild of successful businesswoman Kelly Kaur, who herself experienced homelessness following a refusal to take part in a forced marriage. Kelly is determined to ensure that those who face domestic abuse and forced marriages have access to a refuge where they will be given the physical and emotional support they need to recover from their experiences.

She explains: “By creating awareness and educating communities we can arm people with the knowledge to prevent abuse and seek the support, guidance and refuge they need. Throughcare Housing and Support helps victims to recover from their ordeal and provides the emotional support they need to go on and make a valuable contribution to the society we share.”

Further details are available at www.throughcare.com or by calling Throughcare on 0121 554 3920.

Throughcare Housing and Support is a charity project that provides accommodation and support for vulnerable individuals, and has received backing from the Police Domestic Violence Unit, the Crown Prosecution Service as well as local and national government. Throughcare also campaigns to create awareness amongst the community, and has lobbied the government for more robust legislation to assist victims.

Junaid Bhatti
Director
Ballencrieff House
Holborn
London WC1N 3XX
United Kingdom

Phone: +44 (0) 7980 586 243
Email: junaid@ballencrieff.net

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