Gathering support and momentum to enact change is often arduous, and overcoming the status quo can require years of effort.
But, in the case of child marriage, it is mindboggling that progress has been this slow.
In 2019, Ohio raised the minimum marriage age to 18 for both parties, but allows an exemption for 17-year-olds to marry if they have juvenile court consent, go through a 14-day waiting period and the age differential between the two is not more than four years.
Pennsylvania this month became just the third state in the country, joining Delaware and New Jersey, to fully outlaw marriage for people under 18. Prior to the law being signed by Gov. Tom Wolf, it was legal in the commonwealth for a 16 or 17-year old to get married with a parent’s permission. A child younger than that needed the consent of both a parent and judge. Under those exceptions, more than 2,300 children ages 15 to 17 in Pennsylvania have been married since 2014.
Read more here.