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Forced Marriage & Honour Based Violence FM/HBV

A forced marriage is a marriage in which one or both of the parties is married without her/his consent or against her/his will.

Forced marriage is different from an arranged marriage in which both parties consent to the assistance of parents/family or a third party in identifying a spouse.

Honour Based Violence is a violent crime or incident which may have been committed to protect or defend the 'honour' of family or community.

Crimes of honour do not always include violence, crimes committed in the name of honour may include

  • Domestic abuse
  • Threats of violence
  • Threats to disown
  • Sexual abuse
  • Psychological/emotional abuse ("your grandma wants to see you marry before she dies"; "I will kill myself if you bring shame to our family by not getting married")
  • Forced Marriage
  • Being held against your will or taken somewhere where you do not want to go (often to another country)

Laws on Forced Marriage

It is a criminal offence to force a person into a marriage against their will in England and Wales as well as for UK Nationals being taken abroad to be forced into a marriage.

The maximum penalty for the offence is 7 years imprisonment.

A person at risk of a Forced Marriage or fleeing a Forced Marriage can also apply for a Forced Marriage Protection Order (FMPO) if the order is breached, it carries a five year prison sentence.

What we offer at Coventry Haven Women's Aid:

  •  We are raising awareness of Forced Marriage and Honour Based Violence within schools, colleges, universities and community groups
  •  We are dedicated to offering both practical and emotional support for women and girls who are at risk of or fleeing Forced Marriage and Honour Based Violence
  •  We offer refuge to women and girls over the age of 16 years old if they are at risk of or fleeing from a Forced Marriage or Honour Based Violence
  •  We are committed to recruiting volunteers and advocates with cultural knowledge and language skills to raise awareness and support women and girls at risk of or fleeing Forced Marriage and Honour Based Violence
  •  Develop knowledge and skills of professionals in statutory and voluntary services in order for us all to work together against Forced Marriage and Honour Based Violence. For professionals to have awareness of the referrals process to Coventry Haven Women's Aid and the specialist support available for women or young girls they may be supporting

If you require any more information or are interested in becoming a volunteer or advocate for Forced Marriage and Honour Based Violence please contact Kiran on

For more information on the services offered please click this link

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