Legislation to Eliminate Child Marriage Passed in House of Representatives
The International Protecting Girls by Preventing Child Marriage Act of 2009, an initiative to end child marriage in developing countries, passed in the House of Representatives on a 235-187 vote last week as part of the Foreign Relations Authorization Act.
According to Betty McCollum (D-MN), author of the original bill, the legislation affirms that "child marriage is a human rights violation that undermines America's investments in foreign assistance to improve women's and girl's education, health, and economic status." McCollum's original bill, which is adapted in Section 1111 of the Foreign Relations Authorization Act, calls for the Secretary of State, acting on behalf of the President, to research the ongoing practice of child marriage and develop a strategy to address it.
Child marriage remains a common practice in rural and impoverished areas in many countries, with 100 million girls expected to marry in the next ten years, according to the United Nations Population Fund. Child brides often have few or no educational opportunities, heightened pressure to reproduce, and lower long-term reproductive health.
Media Resources: Betty McCollum Press Release 6/10/09; H.R.2410; H.R.2103; United Nations Population Fund
7/23/2014 Campaign Against Colorado Personhood Initiative Launches - Women's rights organizations, medical groups, and religious leaders joined several activists yesterday at a rally on the steps of the Colorado state capitol to launch a campaign against a new personhood initiative on the state's November ballot.
The No on 67 campaign opposes Amendment 67, otherwise known as the Brady Amendment, a proposed constitutional amendment that would change the definition of "person" and "child" in the Colorado Criminal Code and Wrongful Death act to include "unborn human beings." A similar initiative was on the ballot in 2008 and 2010, but it was defeated both times by a wide margin.
If passed, the amendment would have extreme repercussions, banning abortion in all cases, emergency contraception and birth control, and possibly in-vitro fertilization. . . .