Leader magazineASCL - Association of School and College Leaders

Protection from forced marriages

There has been considerable concern in the media and the courts recently about marriages arranged or forced on British subjects in Pakistan and Bangladesh.

In a recent case a family attempted to marry a mentally incapable son to a woman in Bangladesh so that he would be looked after when his parents were dead. This marriage was performed over an electronic link to Bangladesh by an Islamic cleric. The Court of Appeal ruled that it had jurisdiction over the marriage and that in English law the marriage had no status.

This is certain not to be the last time that issues of this kind are raised.

Schools and colleges should note that such actions are seen as abusive and should be brought to the attention of social services in the same way as any other suspected abuse.

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