As hard as it is to believe, children are married every day in the U.S.
Nearly 300,000 children were married under the age of 18 between 2000 and 2018 in the U.S., with 86 percent of them being young girls wed to adult men. Compared to their unwed peers, these girls are 50% more likely to drop out of high school and are at higher risk of later living in poverty, too. Only four U.S. states ban marriages under the age of 18 outright, and girls in the other 46 states are left with no protections.
We are at a crucial point in our fight to protect underage girls from marriage in the U.S.
While most states are sitting on the sidelines, not doing their part to help, several states are currently debating bills that would ban child marriages. A legislative victory in any of these states—New York, Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Indiana, or others—can catch the attention of other states and spark much-needed momentum across the whole nation!
Our window of opportunity is narrow. Many state legislative sessions are wrapping up soon, so if we don’t make our push now, it could be almost a year before we have another chance to advocate for child marriage bans.
Please join our fight to save girls from child marriage, female genital mutialtion, and other dangerous practices in the U.S. Your gift today can do even more thanks to a $15,000 pledge in matching gift funds from our longtime supporter Bill Miller. Give a gift now and help us unlock these funds.
The price of inaction is too high and frankly, unacceptable: Every year without a ban means an estimated 2,500 children could be trapped in early and unwanted marriages.
Give a gift today and protect the girls across the U.S.
Read more about child marriage: