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It’s Time To Make Child Marriage a Thing of the Past

Globally, one in five girls is forced into marriage before they turn 18, putting their health — and often their very lives — at risk. The origins of child marriage are deeply rooted in gender inequality, which seeks to lessen the value and participation of women and girls in society. Studies have shown that rates of child marriage tend to increase following conflict-related displacement. The global COVID-19 pandemic has profoundly impacted adolescent girls, putting them at higher risk of experiencing child marriage due to school closures, disruptions to health and protective systems, and increased economic stress within households.

Also worsened by conflict and other crises is food insecurity. The United Nations World Food Programme estimates that close to 500 million of the world’s 828 million hungry live in areas affected by conflict.

Read more of the Women’s Refugee Commission’s (WRC) op-ed in Ms. Magazine.

Learn more about WRC’s work on child marriage.