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Forced marriage of people with learning disabilities: a human rights issue

Clawson, Rachael; Fyson, Rachel



This paper reports some of the findings of an exploratory study which sought to better understand the demographics of forced marriage of people with learning disabilities and the contexts in which such marriages may occur. It was found that forced marriages of people with and without learning disabilities showed broad similarities in relation to ethnicity, some differences in terms of age and substantial differences in terms of gender. Men and women with learning disabilities are equally likely to be victims of forced marriage. The reasons for people with learning disabilities being forced to marry are most often associated with a desire on the part of families to secure permanent care, but can also be associated with cultural (mis)understandings of the nature of disability. These findings are contextualised by considering the relationship between forced marriage, human rights and learning disability.


Clawson, R., & Fyson, R. (2017). Forced marriage of people with learning disabilities: a human rights issue. Disability and Society, 32(6), 810-830.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 13, 2017
Online Publication Date May 19, 2017
Publication Date Jul 3, 2017
Deposit Date May 26, 2017
Publicly Available Date Nov 20, 2018
Journal Disability & Society
Print ISSN 0968-7599
Electronic ISSN 1360-0508
Publisher Routledge
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 32
Issue 6
Pages 810-830
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Disability & Society on 2017, available online:


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