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Forced Marriage among Persons with Intellectual Disabilities: Discussion Paper

Groce, NE; Gazizova, D; Hassiotis, A; (2014) Forced Marriage among Persons with Intellectual Disabilities: Discussion Paper. (Leonard Cheshire Disability and Inclusive Development Centre working paper series 27). Leonard Cheshire Disability and Inclusive Development Centre: London, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

Global human rights laws grant all individuals with disabilities, including individuals with intellectual disabilities, the right to marry and have families. In those cases however, where marriages are arranged between an individual with an intellectual disability and another (whether non-disabled or disabled) against the will of the intellectually disabled person, such marriages can be considered forced. According to the UK government, a forced marriage ‘is a marriage conducted without the valid consent of both parties, where duress is a factor’. This paper comments on the ‘forced marriage’ of persons with intellectual disabilities, a practice found within several ethnic and minority communities in the UK, where arranged marriages are common. While arranged marriages are entered into with the consent of both potential spouses, in forced marriages it may well be the case that at least one of the parties is unable to consent due to lack of capacity. In such cases, coercion is implicit. We believe that this practice is not unique to the UK and globalisation and international migration has increased the risk of persons with intellectual disabilities being forced into social contracts such as marriage, of which they have little understanding. The implications of such marriages for persons with intellectual disabilities themselves as well as for their partners and their families are significant and need to be more widely acknowledged and discussed.

Type: Working / discussion paper
Title: Forced Marriage among Persons with Intellectual Disabilities: Discussion Paper
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: https://www.ucl.ac.uk/epidemiology-health-care/res...
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health > Epidemiology and Public Health
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10128025
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