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Still Waters

Government pledges to raise legal age of marriage to 18 in England and Wales

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Still Waters

The government has committed to raising the minimum legal age of marriage to 18 in England and Wales in a victory for campaigners.

Currently, 16 and 17-year-olds can marry with parental consent, but a coalition of charities has warned that this legal loophole is being exploited to coerce young people into child marriage.

In a letter to campaigners from the Ministry of Justice, shared with the Guardian, it said it was committed to raising the minimum legal age to 18 “as soon as legislative opportunity arises”.

The news came as Sajid Javid, the former chancellor, told the Times he would introduce a private member’s bill next week making it illegal for under-18s to marry.

https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2021/jun/11/government-pledges-to-raise-legal-age-of-marriage-to-18-in-england-and-wales

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OverSword
1 hour ago, Still Waters said:

The government has committed to raising the minimum legal age of marriage to 18 in England and Wales in a victory for campaigners.

Currently, 16 and 17-year-olds can marry with parental consent, but a coalition of charities has warned that this legal loophole is being exploited to coerce young people into child marriage.

In a letter to campaigners from the Ministry of Justice, shared with the Guardian, it said it was committed to raising the minimum legal age to 18 “as soon as legislative opportunity arises”.

The news came as Sajid Javid, the former chancellor, told the Times he would introduce a private member’s bill next week making it illegal for under-18s to marry.

https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2021/jun/11/government-pledges-to-raise-legal-age-of-marriage-to-18-in-england-and-wales

My parents were married when my mother was 16 and father just turned 18 and stayed that way for until my father died 56 years later.  So they want to pass a law that may have made me the child of a single mother? Maybe they should outlaw teenagers having sex too eh? :huh:  

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'Walt' E. Kurtz
2 hours ago, acute said:

Never mind the 'forced marriage' angle.

16/17-year-olds are not intellectually or emotionally ready for such a commitment.

 

good that you're changing it your brain is not fully developed until you're 25. 

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ted hughes
On 6/11/2021 at 10:18 PM, OverSword said:

My parents were married when my mother was 16 and father just turned 18 and stayed that way for until my father died 56 years later.  So they want to pass a law that may have made me the child of a single mother? Maybe they should outlaw teenagers having sex too eh:huh:  

They do, to a certain extent. Sex with a minor is statutory rape. For example, a 14 year old girl cannot legally consent to have sex with a 16 year old boy. I thought that recently the US had made progress in this area too?

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Grey Area
1 hour ago, ted hughes said:

They do, to a certain extent. Sex with a minor is statutory rape. For example, a 14 year old girl cannot legally consent to have sex with a 16 year old boy. I thought that recently the US had made progress in this area too?

It’s not as clear cut as that, 13 and under is the age that consent cannot be given legally, even if proved in court.

For example if a 17 year old and a 14 year have sex and they are both deemed to be Fraser competent and the act was consensual, it is highly unlikely anyone would be prosecuted.

The law is there to protect children and not to criminalise young people, and so is used with discretion for cases where children may have been groomed or coerced.

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ted hughes
2 minutes ago, Grey Area said:

It’s not as clear cut as that, 13 and under is the age that consent cannot be given legally, even if proved in court.

For example if a 17 year old and a 14 year have sex and they are both deemed to be Fraser competent and the act was consensual, it is highly unlikely anyone would be prosecuted.

The law is there to protect children and not to criminalise young people, and so is used with discretion for cases where children may have been groomed or coerced.

I know. I am familiar with this field.

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Grey Area
2 minutes ago, ted hughes said:

I know. I am familiar with this field.

So would know then that teenage sex is pretty far from being outlawed then?  And a 14 year old certainly can consent to sex with a 16 year old.

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ted hughes
5 minutes ago, Grey Area said:

So would know then that teenage sex is pretty far from being outlawed then?  And a 14 year old certainly can consent to sex with a 16 year old.

They can't consent. I hope you are not advocating what I am beginning to suspect you might be.

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Grey Area
41 minutes ago, ted hughes said:

They can't consent. I hope you are not advocating what I am beginning to suspect you might be.

Don’t be naive.  The law is not there to prosecute 16 year olds who engage in consensual sex with under 16’s.  The courts would be overrun.

I am not advocating anything, I am telling you how it is.  14 year olds can consent, 13 years of age is the threshold in that respect.  Unless there is reasonable suspicion of a crime beyond simple intercourse, such as grooming or gang related activities the CPS won’t touch it.

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ted hughes
6 minutes ago, Grey Area said:

Don’t be naive.  The law is not there to prosecute 16 year olds who engage in consensual sex with under 16’s.  The courts would be overrun.

I am not advocating anything, I am telling you how it is.  14 year olds can consent, 13 years of age is the threshold in that respect.  Unless there is reasonable suspicion of a crime beyond simple intercourse, such as grooming or gang related activities the CPS won’t touch it.

What you are now restating is simply wrong and may be misleading. 

I know in practical terms anyone can do anything. Someone can take a gun to a mall and shoot 20 people.  That is why we have laws.

I'm done with this.

Edited by ted hughes

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Grey Area
16 minutes ago, ted hughes said:

What you are now restating is simply wrong and may be misleading. 

If two teens appeared in court because they had had consensual sex, the defence would simply present evidence of Fraser Competency.  The judge would admonish the prosecution for potentially ruining the life of a teenager and likely dismiss the case.

The law has to recognise the massive consequences of a sexual offence on record, and without moderation it’s so open to exploitation, every father of every daughter would be pressing charges of sexual assault and rape.

Yes the law states 16 as the age of consent, in practice it’s not so simple.  That is the point, and potentially ruining the life of a teen for doing what comes naturally to the vast majority of us is also abhorrent.

Or would you have the prison system full of every horny teen in the U.K.?

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ethereal_scout

Basically I'm against this - raising the age for marriage that is. Its a long standing English custom and tradition based around the Age of Consent 16 - which is common law. The British Parliament has been overrun with 'foreigners' - the Private School set who don't know a jot of common law and customs because by definition they're private from them all. Its all due to asylum seekers to the UK who can't get on with one another and engaging in forced marriages - thus because of a foreign minority the laws of the English land need to be completely trashed. 

As too what the kids get upto amoungst themselves - that they're right. The Age of Consent 16 keeps the over 16s away from the under 16s - its Common Law (therefore not in writing) and Death - therefore nothing to do with sex. Church of England wise "sex is nothing, death not nothing" - so the kids can do what they please with each other as long as it consensual.

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OverSword
5 hours ago, ted hughes said:

They do, to a certain extent. Sex with a minor is statutory rape. For example, a 14 year old girl cannot legally consent to have sex with a 16 year old boy. I thought that recently the US had made progress in this area too?

It’s a pointless law regardless of it being there. Two hormone driven teens don’t care about statutory rape. What if they’re both underage? Charge them both? Seems pretty ridiculous.

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Grey Area
51 minutes ago, OverSword said:

It’s a pointless law regardless of it being there. Two hormone driven teens don’t care about statutory rape. What if they’re both underage? Charge them both? Seems pretty ridiculous.

It’s not meaningless if it’s a 40 year old A-hole who’s spent the last 6 months online convincing a 13 year old that the one thing they need to do is consent to sex.

That is why this law exists.

If its 2 consenting teens it won’t get to court.  The Crown Prosecution Service must ensure that every case they prosecute is in the public interest.  Horny teens are not top of the stack when it comes to the expenditure of tax payers money.

Edited by Grey Area
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ethereal_scout

 To the best of my understanding the Age of Consent is many things wrapped up into one, ie working age. It was raised from 12 to 16 during the Victorian period (1850s to 1900s) to get the kids out of Coal mines and down from chimney stacks. Fundamentally and Adult has no defense in law the someone under the age of 16 consented to be a participant in anything. ie 

"the 10 year old wanted to go coal mining, he consented" - thats no defense in law and would be thrown out. It could be dealt with as a basic breach of the AoC - no coal mining till they're 16.

Kids still do have the right of consent however and can give and withdraw it - its just the adults have no defense that they had their consent.

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OverSword
4 hours ago, Grey Area said:

It’s not meaningless if it’s a 40 year old A-hole who’s spent the last 6 months online convincing a 13 year old that the one thing they need to do is consent to sex.

That is why this law exists.

If its 2 consenting teens it won’t get to court.  The Crown Prosecution Service must ensure that every case they prosecute is in the public interest.  Horny teens are not top of the stack when it comes to the expenditure of tax payers money.

That’s not what we’re talking about. What we specifically discussed was two teens. 

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Grey Area
42 minutes ago, OverSword said:

That’s not what we’re talking about. What we specifically discussed was two teens. 

Yes I agree in that respect it is pointless and not generally used for such circumstances.  It is there to protect children.

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ted hughes
10 hours ago, Grey Area said:

It’s not as clear cut as that, 13 and under is the age that consent cannot be given legally, even if proved in court.

For example if a 17 year old and a 14 year have sex and they are both deemed to be Fraser competent and the act was consensual, it is highly unlikely anyone would be prosecuted.

The law is there to protect children and not to criminalise young people, and so is used with discretion for cases where children may have been groomed or coerced.

This is not true. It is statutory rape. The 17 year old would find himself in very difficult situation and would likely face legal proceedings.

The Gillick competency test and Fraser guidelines were formulated to assist doctors in making a decision with regard to safeguarding the sexual health of young people.

The guidelines do not override the law.

I thanked you in a previous post because you said "It’s (the law on age of consent) not meaningless if it’s a 40 year old A-hole who’s spent the last 6 months online convincing a 13 year old that the one thing they need to do is consent to sex."

If it is a 17 year old A-hole doing the same thing he would not escape justice simply because he knew what he was doing and was a teenager.

People can't consent to a criminal act. If I told you I was going to rob a shop, you might agree it was a good idea but you could not give me 'consent' to do it. It would make the law meaningless.

We would all consent to do what we wanted.

 

Edited by ted hughes

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Grey Area
37 minutes ago, ted hughes said:

This is not true. It is statutory rape. The 17 year old would find himself in very difficult situation.

If the person of lesser age took the stand and said I am in a relationship, I understand what I did and wanted to do it because we are in love, would a jury find guilty and ruin a persons life for being in a relationship and all that entails?

it’s certainly not ideal from a personal perspective, I certainly would not be happy if that was my 14 year old, but as I said in a previous post, is it in the public’s interest to start locking up young people for having consensual sex?  No it certainly isn’t.

The police would investigate, the 17 year old would be put through the ringer, the CPS would in all likely hood take no further action.

A couple of quotes from CPS.gov.uk

Quote

If the sexual activity was in fact genuinely consensual and the youth and child under 13 years are fairly close in age and development , a prosecution is unlikely to be appropriate.

Quote

prosecutors should bear in mind the overriding purpose of the legislation was to protect children and it was not Parliament’s intention to punish children unnecessarily or for the criminal law to intervene where it was wholly inappropriate.


Ted I am not making any of this stuff up, I am a children’s rights officer and formerly a children’s social worker and have been for the past 18 years.  Working in this field is my bread and butter.  The main takeaway here is that criminalising our young people for doing something that is a natural part of growing up is more harmful than good.

Link below to the CPS youth offending page for sexual offences.

https://www.cps.gov.uk/legal-guidance/rape-and-sexual-offences-chapter-12-sexual-offences-and-youths

Quote

The Gillick competency test and Fraser guidelines were formulated to assist doctors in making a decision with regard to safeguarding the sexual health of young people.

And are used generally throughout the legal field and in social care and health.  Important to note that Gillick-Fraser refers to legal case from which they became precedent so they are most certainly admissible in a court of law. 
 

Quote

If it is a 17 year old A-hole doing the same thing he would not escape justice simply because he knew what he was doing and was a teenager.

Absolutely, not what we’re talking about here though is it!

Quote

People can't consent to a criminal act. If I told you I was going to rob a shop, you might agree it was a good idea but you could not give me 'consent' to do it. It would make the law meaningless.

We would all consent to do what we wanted.

Legally consent can be proven in a court for any young person over the age of thirteen.  Another quote from the CPS

Quote

The principle that a child under 13 years old cannot in law consent applies to offences committed by youths.

 

Edited by Grey Area

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spartan max2
6 hours ago, Grey Area said:

It’s not meaningless if it’s a 40 year old A-hole who’s spent the last 6 months online convincing a 13 year old that the one thing they need to do is consent to sex.

That is why this law exists.

If its 2 consenting teens it won’t get to court.  The Crown Prosecution Service must ensure that every case they prosecute is in the public interest.  Horny teens are not top of the stack when it comes to the expenditure of tax payers money.

All it takes is a peed'd off parent wanting to press charges.

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ted hughes
1 hour ago, Grey Area said:

If the person of lesser age took the stand and said I am in a relationship, I understand what I did and wanted to do it because we are in love, would a jury find guilty and ruin a persons life for being in a relationship and all that entails?

it’s certainly not ideal from a personal perspective, I certainly would not be happy if that was my 14 year old, but as I said in a previous post, is it in the public’s interest to start locking up young people for having consensual sex?  No it certainly isn’t.

The police would investigate, the 17 year old would be put through the ringer, the CPS would in all likely hood take no further action.

A couple of quotes from CPS.gov.uk


Ted I am not making any of this stuff up, I am a children’s rights officer and formerly a children’s social worker and have been for the past 18 years.  Working in this field is my bread and butter.  The main takeaway here is that criminalising our young people for doing something that is a natural part of growing up is more harmful than good.

Link below to the CPS youth offending page for sexual offences.

https://www.cps.gov.uk/legal-guidance/rape-and-sexual-offences-chapter-12-sexual-offences-and-youths

And are used generally throughout the legal field and in social care and health.  Important to note that Gillick-Fraser refers to legal case from which they became precedent so they are most certainly admissible in a court of law. 
 

Absolutely, not what we’re talking about here though is it!

Legally consent can be proven in a court for any young person over the age of thirteen.  Another quote from the CPS

 

Ah, I think I can see your viewpoint.

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by ted hughes

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ted hughes
On 6/13/2021 at 1:41 PM, Grey Area said:

Don’t be naive.  The law is not there to prosecute 16 year olds who engage in consensual sex with under 16’s.  The courts would be overrun.

I am not advocating anything, I am telling you how it is.  14 year olds can consent, 13 years of age is the threshold in that respect.  Unless there is reasonable suspicion of a crime beyond simple intercourse, such as grooming or gang related activities the CPS won’t touch it.

I accept this and thanks, Grey Area.  I'm always open to learning something new. And I accept your obvious experience in this area.

As I understand it, the proposed legislation is designed to protect young people who may be coerced into a forced marriage, and will prevent that until they have reached legal adulthood themselves.

And I also think I am right in saying that if children's services are involved in a case of underage sex, it is always investigated under the Safeguarding legislation?

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Grey Area
3 hours ago, ted hughes said:

I accept this and thanks, Grey Area.  I'm always open to learning something new. And I accept your obvious experience in this area.

As I understand it, the proposed legislation is designed to protect young people who may be coerced into a forced marriage, and will prevent that until they have reached legal adulthood themselves.

And I also think I am right in saying that if children's services are involved in a case of underage sex, it is always investigated under the Safeguarding legislation?

Well maybe.  If services are involved like Child Protection it’s likely they are involved as a direct result of the underage sex, and their focus will be on equipping parents and wider family on keeping their child safe.

If they are a child who has grown up in care, there will be a lot more scrutiny on that child’s life with social workers and 6 month care plan reviews, but it’s always a challenge for social workers to have the required trust to have those intimate conversations.

Because of their vulnerable status it it more likely criminal proceedings will be pursued, because the dangers of grooming are increased, especially for young people in children’s homes.

Oh and thanks for your very mature response, you are an officer and a gentleman.:tu:

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ethereal_scout

So, getting to the point of it, two 10 year olds getting up to what 10 year old maybe getting upto can be prosecuted? Because that news to me. But then I'm on the Roman team.

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