Forced Marriage: Analysis of Arranged Marriage as Practiced in Jewish Communities

Jewish think tank, Nahamu speaks out against forced marriage within the Charedi Jewish community

Nahamu has identified markers of forced marriage in the Charedi Jewish community and created guidance to enable policy makers and professionals to recognise and address abuse. We call on the Forced Marriage Unit and the Department for Education to work proactively to tackle forced marriage. 

Founder of Nahamu, Yehudis Fletcher said:

“Many arranged marriages bring love and joy to families, enabling many to build long happy lives together. We want to ensure that everyone partaking in an arranged marriage has the full capacity to consent to it, so that there is no coercion or force. Forced marriage is forbidden under Jewish Law and it is a criminal offence in the UK.

Nahamu’s markers of forced marriage as they present in the UK charedi community can help policy makers and professionals to recognise who is at risk. Our goal is to ensure that all Charedi Jews can live safe, autonomous lives, free of coercion and control.”

Co-author, Eve Sacks said:

“Our five  markers demonstrate both social coercion to marry, and the removal of the young person’s ability to give the free and full consent to marriage. 

Those markers are a limited ability to opt out of the arranged marriage process. a rushed engagement, with limited opportunity to meet before the engagement is agreed, a prohibition on further meetings until the wedding, the entering into of a binding engagement ritual, and the removal of full and free consent by an expectation that they will accept their parent’s choice and marry the person to whom they are introduced.“


Please see our attached Position Paper on Forced Marriage for full details.

For press contact: Yehudis Fletcher on,