LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — In Michigan, children as young as 14 can get married, and all they need is a parent’s signature.
Technically, there is no minimum age under the law.
Senator Sarah Anthony and Rep. Kara Hope held a press conference Thursday to reintroduce their legislation to put an end to child marriages and raise the minimum age to exchange vows to 18, with no exceptions.
During Thursday’s press conference, a victim of child marriage also shared her story.
“I didn’t understand what I was giving up. At 16, I already had three full-ride scholarships to pre-med,” said Courtney Kosnik, who was married at 16. “I had dreams, I had plans. And that all changed the day I married him. He began physically, sexually, and emotionally abusing me on our wedding night, and it continued for 23 years.”
According to Unchained at Last, the only organization dedicated to ending child marriage in the U.S., 5,400 children under the age of 18 have been married in Michigan since 2000.