PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — R.I. Governor Dan McKee has signed legislation meant to ban child marriage in the state.
Democratic McKee said Monday the new law is an effort to “protect children and prevent exploitation” by eliminating language in state law allowing youths under the age of 18 to obtain a marriage license with parental consent.
Unchained At Last, a national advocacy group, said four other states have passed similar laws: Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Minnesota.
It estimates about 170 children entered into marriages in Rhode Island between 2000 and 2018 and that 88% of the unions were girls wed to men.