Updated: May 08, 2020 08:42 PM
Created: May 06, 2020 02:53 PM
Currently, 16 and 17-year-olds can get married if they have permission from a parent, guardian or the court, and a judge signs off on it. The new legislation would get rid of the exception and prevent anyone younger than 18 from getting married in Minnesota.
According to 2014 Census data, 1,142 children ages 15 to 17 in Minnesota reported having been married, and advocates estimated that statistic is lower than the actual number.
Supporters of the bill say minors are often coerced or forced into marriages making it difficult for them to escape. They add that it also has negative impacts on girls' health, education and economic opportunities, and significantly increases the chance they'll experience domestic violence.
The New Jersey-based organization Unchained at Last says Minnesota would be just the third state in the country to fully ban marriage for people under the age of 18, without exception.
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