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Ending Violence Against Children: Child Marriage

Child marriage is a major threat to the survival, health, and well-being of children. Child marriage is a violation of basic human rights which places children, especially girls, at an increased risk of physical, sexual, psychological, and economic violence throughout their lives. While both girls and boys are subject to child marriage, girls are three times more vulnerable due to cultural norms and traditions and gender-based discrimination. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) was the ­first international instrument to articulate the world’s commitment to end and prevent child marriage and protect children from harmful traditional practices. The CEDAW and the CRC are mutually reinforcing conventions that forbid child marriage in international law. Bangladesh has also enacted a law to address child marriage. The new law, which is called the Child Marriage Restraint Act, was passed in February 2017 by the Bangladesh Parliament. This policy brief outlines World Vision's steps to ensure further policy amendment regarding child marriage, prevention of the act, protection of children, and the strengthening of social protection for minors.