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Child marriages keep Dominicans poor

A third of girls in the Dominican Republic marry before the age of 18, according to a World Bank/Unicef study. The “Economic Impact of Child Marriages and Early Unions in the Dominican Republic” study was presented on Wednesday, 23 August 2017 at the Presidential Palace in an event organized by the Office of the Vice President Margarita Cedeño. The study was financed by the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation among others.

The study indicates that the elimination or reduction of child marriages would reduce poverty by around 30%. The study says that eliminating child marriages would mean savings of US$4.8 billion for the country by 2030 and an increase in income for women of US$1,133.

During the event, Rosa Elcarte, Unicef representative in the Dominican Republic, recommended Dominican authorities promote a national plan to eradicate child marriages. She highlighted during the presentation that more than one in 10 girls in the Dominican Republic are married or living with a partner before their 15th birthday. The DR has the highest rate of child marriages in the Americas.

Local statistics indicate that 11.7% of women currently between 18 and 22 years old reported that they had married or lived with a man before they turned 15.

“This is incredibly tragic,” Elcarte says. She says the rate of child marriage in the Dominican Republic is similar to that in some sub-Saharan African nations.

The Chamber of Deputies recently approved changes to the Civil Code that eliminates provisions that made legal child marriages.

Source: DR1, Vicepresidencia

Aug 24, 2017

Category: DR News |

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Last updated September 20, 2017 at 12:27 AM
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