In 2012 the U.K. Forced Marriage Unit reported 1,485 cases of forced marriage. The AHA Foundation, an advocacy organization founded by vocal women’s rights defenders, helped 54 victims in 2013 out of forced marriages. Why make Oregon a spawning ground for these abuses by allowing individuals not subject to an oath to perform ceremonies?
Those listed in statute authorized to solemnize a marriage are those that have taken an oath by their very position to be ethical and trustworthy and accountable to the public. This bill adds individuals that aren’t under an oath of trustworthiness nor committed to the public interest. Without this oath, we are opening up a sacred ceremony to abuses. Forced marriages happen, but currently most of them happen when the girl is shipped out of the United States.