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24/11/2020 | Indicator
UNICEF para cada infancia

Child marriage

The child marriage indicator corresponds to the proportion of women between the ages of 20 and 24 who were married or were in a stable union before turning 18, measured as a percentage. Child marriage is a violation of the human rights of children and adolescents, as it puts children, especially girls, at risk to their health and life and limits their integral development. Early unions are associated with child and teenage maternity, school dropouts, less participation in the labor market as adults, greater risk of suffering gender violence, and lack of autonomy to make their own decisions about their bodies and their lives. This indicator is part of the indicators included in target 5.3. Eliminate all harmful practices, such as child, early and forced marriage and female genital mutilation from Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 5 Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.


If we look at the proportion of women between the ages of 20 and 24  who were married or maintained a stable union before reaching the age of 18, the situation in the region is serious, as this harmful practice affects one in five women (22.1%).

Suriname    (36%), Nicaragua (35%), Honduras (34%), Belize (34%),  Dominican Republic (32%) and Guyana (32%) lead with over 30%. There are only four countries with percentages below 20%: Costa Rica (17%), Argentina (16%), Peru  (14%) and Jamaica (8%).