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PMRC Press Statement On the Proposals to Change the Legal Age of Marriage

PMRC Press Statement On the Proposals to Change the Legal Age of Marriage

September 02
14:35 2017

Policy Monitoring and Research Centre (PMRC) Executive Director Bernadette Deka making a contribution from the floor during the panel of discussion on ending Violence Against Women at the Workplace. This was on the sidelines of the 61st Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women at UN Headquarters in New York on Wednesday, March 15, 2017.

By Ms. Bernadette Deka PMRC Executive Director

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Child marriage is widely recognized as a violation of children’s rights and a direct form of discrimination against girls who are often deprived of their basic rights to health, education, development and equality.
The practice of child marriage is a violation of girls’ human rights and puts girls’ health at risk, hinders their ability to exercise their rights to choose who, if, and when to marry; to pursue their right to education; and in many cases, may also impede

their legal and economic rights. Child marriage ultimately violates a girl’s aspirations and achievements.

President Lungu with First Lady Esther Lungu – Picture by Derrick Sinjela

The reasons behind child marriage are complex, but some root causes include poor legislation, inequitable gender norms, poverty and the belief that marriage will protect girls from sexual assault or harassment. Current research shows that child marriage limits girls’ education, leads to early and more frequent childbirth and puts girls at a heightened risk of experiencing violence, food insecurity and other negative health outcomes, such as pregnancy complications or sexually transmitted diseases. Women who were married as girls also have fewer economic opportunities and experience greater degrees of social isolation. 
To read more see attachment.

Ms. Bernadette Deka

Executive Director

PMRC Zambia
Plot No. 36C Sable Road, Kabulonga, Lusaka
Tel: +260 211 269 717 | +260 979 015 660
Website: www.pmrczambia.com

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