Forced Marriage - You have the right to choose
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A new video from the Home Office shows the devastating impact of forced marriage. You can view it here.
Under the new legislation, anyone found guilty of forced marriage can face up to seven years imprisonment.
Forced marriage is a crime where one or both spouses do not, or cannot, consent to the marriage and duress is involved. This can include physical, psychological, financial, sexual and emotional pressure. In some cases victims suffer violence and abuse.
Forced marriage is not the same as an ‘arranged marriage’ which is a cultural practice, which is not unlawful, and involves the consent of both spouses.
Some of the signs which might indicate that someone is facing or is already a victim of forced marriage include:
- Domestic abuse or rape
- Depression, or becoming worried or withdrawn
- Poor performance at work, school or college or often being absent
- No control over their own money
- A surprise engagement to an apparent stranger
- They may not come back from a visit to another country
- Early or unwanted pregnancy
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If you or someone you know has concerns about forced marriage West Yorkshire Police has specially trained officers who are here to help and will take every report very seriously. We will respect the views of the victims and provide the necessary support.
You can contact West Yorkshire Police in a non emergency 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by calling 101.
If you are deaf or hard of hearing please use type talk 18001 101.
If there is a danger to life or a crime is in progress always call 999.
There are Safeguarding Units in every district of West Yorkshire with professionals who understand the issues of forced marriage and know how to help:
- Wakefield District Safeguarding Unit – 01924 878398
- Calderdale District Safeguarding Unit – 01422 337041
- Kirklees District Safeguarding Unit – 01924 335073
- Bradford District Safeguarding Unit – 01274 376116
- Leeds District Safeguarding Unit – 0113 3859590
Other agencies that can help:
You can report an offence in confidence and anonymously by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Karma Nirvana Helpline – 0800 5999 247
Home Office Forced Marriage Unit – www.gov.uk/forced-marriage
Right to choose: Spotting the signs of forced marriage
The Home Office has provided 3 videos showing the signs of forced marraige. You can view them here.
A West Yorkshire Imam is lending his support to the Forced Marriage Campaign.
National Day of Remembrance for Victims of Honour Based Violence
Tuesday the 14th of July 2015 has been designated the first National Day of Remembrance for Victims of Honour Based Violence. This date has been chosen as it marks the birthday of Shafilea Ahmed, who was born in Bradford and murdered in Warrington in 2003 by her parents in an honour based killing. They were convicted in 2012. It is also a time of year when there are concerns that children will be taken overseas during the long school holiday for purposes of forced marriage. For more information about Shafilea Ahmed please click here.
Please see the below video of Assistant Chief Constable Russ Foster talking about the National Day of Remembrance for Victims of Honour Based Violence
West Yorkshire Police Forced Marriage Campaign Video by ACC John Robins