What is it?
So-called ‘honour-based violence’ is a crime or incident which has or may have been committed to ‘protect’ or ‘defend’ the honour of the family and/or community. Honour-based violence is where a person is punished by their family or community for actually or allegedly undermining what is believed to be the correct code of behaviour within that culture. This type of violence is different from other forms of violence, as it is often committed with some degree of approval and/or collusion from the family and/or community.
By not following ‘correct’ behaviour it may be perceived that the person may have brought shame or dishonour to the family. It is from this perception that the offender(s) believes that the victim has shamed the family and punishment is seen as the method of dealing with the shame.
Honour base violence incorporates a range of offences including:
What is an arranged marriage?
Arranged marriages have worked well in society for many years. Families of both spouses take a leading role in arranging the marriage but the choice whether or not to accept the arrangement remains with the prospective spouses.
What is a Forced Marriage?
One of the most common and high profile forms of honour-based violence is the practise of forced marriage. This is where a couple is forced into a marriage without the valid consent of one or both of the parties and is achieved by placing the victim under stress including physical, psychological, financial, sexual and emotional pressure.
Forced Marriage is an abuse of Human Rights and cannot be justified on any grounds.
Where can you get help or further information?
The police take reports of forced marriage very seriously and will work to fully protect and support .
In an emergency
If you or another are at immediate risk of harm call 999 straight away. If you cannot make voice calls, you can now contact the 999 emergency services by SMS text from your mobile phone. However, you will only be able to use this service if you have registered with emergency SMS first.
Contact the police
You do not have to give your personal details and can speak to someone confidentially within Gwent Police. Please be aware that the investigation and ability to prosecute an offender(s) is severely limited if the Gwent Police cannot contact you. You can contact the police, either by telephone by ringing 101 or by visiting your local police station. Details on how to contact Gwent police can be found at www.Gwent Police.uk
You can report online using the facility on this website
Third party reporting centres
If you don’t feel confident speaking to the police there are lots of other agencies that can support you. Local agencies such as the Citizens Advice Bureau, Community Voluntary Services and the Connect Gwent Team can also report the incident on your behalf and provide you with advice and support. The Organisations that can help are also available on this website.
If you suspect you are going to be forced into marriage in the UK or be taken abroad to marry then please contact the police so they can help protect you and prevent this happening.
A Home Office and Foreign and Commonwealth Office initiative, the Forced Marriage Unit (FMU) is dedicated to preventing British nationals being forced into marriage. They deal with over 1600 reports of forced marriages a year. They will need to talk to you on the phone to work out a plan of action. Their caseworkers are fully trained to deal with the emotional, cultural and social issues surrounding forced marriage. They can be contacted on 020 7008 0151.
Or, if you are concerned that someone you know if going to be taken abroad and forced into marriage you can apply for a Forced Marriage Prevention Order to be made. For further details on this please visit www.justice.gov.uk/protecting-the-vulnerable/forced-marriage