German teachers are to get guidelines on handling with pupils the issue of forced marriages, the government said Friday after a spate of cases hit the headlines.
"Forced marriage is an infringement of human rights," Maria Boehmer, the government's commissioner for immigration and integration, said.
This article was prepared by the Islam in Europe blog - islamineurope.blogspot.com
"Current mechanisms for helping young men and women threatened by forced marriage often come too late or not at all. Schools can play an important role here," she said.
The guidelines aim to give schools and teachers concrete tips for picking up on early warning signs if a pupil is being pushed into a forced marriage, and on talking to parents and alerting child protection services.
With many girls forced into marrying someone chosen by their families too scared to come forward, figures are hard to come by. But support groups estimate that more than 1,000 forced unions happen every year in Germany.
Mostly the girls are Muslims, but not all. Often they are sent back to their parents' countries of origin such as Turkey, Lebanon, Syria, Kosovo, Iran and Iraq to marry, and cannot return because they have no German passport.
Source: Expatica (English)