Debate on this starts NOW and will last until 05:45 GMT on August 11th, 2020.
I want to begin by welcoming you back to Europolis, Councillor Granger! We're glad to have you.
I definitely support the premise of this Act and would like to see this passed. However, this bill currently has many problems, all of which stem from the fact that it includes a lot of extraneous information and it's much more complicated than it needs to be. I shall try to remedy this as much as possible to make this Act passable.
I want to begin with saying that this Act has a very severe and intense name. The Child Marriage Act is a better name in my opinion.
I really don't like the first half of the Preamble. Child marriage puts all European youth at risk, not just girls. I understand that girls are very likely to be the largest demographic of youth forced into child marriage, but it is not a plight that is holistically centred upon them. Besides, I don't think we should be using gendered terms there anyway, it is better to simply use neutral ones. Moreover, the final statement of the first paragraph probably isn't true in the context of our Union, considering that the overwhelming amount of our member states are developed states, almost of which I believe - and hope - have already outlawed child marriage. Complications as a result of teenage pregnancy is not even within the top 10 causes of teenage death in Inquista.
The second half of the Preamble is fine, and probably is what the Preamble simply ought to be.
The Definitions section is completely unnecessary, as you've used none of those defined words in the actual text. This entire section should be removed.
Section I is also completely unnecessary, because yes, all member states are required to modify their Corpus Juris or Civil Code after the implementation of the Act, which is already stated in Section III, Article IV.
Section II really is where your focus should have been. I'm not sure if I quite like the wording. When you say "only people over 18 years of age", you realise this means 19+ years? Surely you mean persons 18 years and older. I also don't like the word 'capacity', which is a bit vague. I like the fact that you specified they can't marry - as in perform the act of marrying of someone - but I don't like you didn't say they can't be in a marriage, which is a whole other legal point. Instead you used the word unionship there, which is fine, but you should include marriage as well.
Section III is a bit messy. Clause I is rather redundant, because if this law were to pass, then yes, these offices would have to close anyway. Although I'm not sure why you mentioned effective immediately, because that is an unrealistic time frame for national legislatures to carry out that task. You also misspelled immediately, and did it again with Clause IV, so therefore the entire timeframe is actually void.
Clause II of Section III is about to break up a huge swathe of families across Europe, and literally take all children under the age of 18 away from their parents. I think I know what you mean by cohabitation, but it doesn't always mean that. It can also mean people inhabiting the same place. Besides, this is a bit of a weird point to bring up anyway. Should be removed.
If Clause III is a punishable and illegal offence, then you should also probably mention it in a previous section, like Section II, that such practices will no longer be allowed. Only marriages of people of a certain age are permitted, but it nowhere stated that marriages of minors specifically were illegal.
This all leads me to my amendments:
Erradication of Child Marriage Act 2020
Child marriage puts our European girls' lives and health at risk, and limits their future prospects. Girls who are forced into marriage often become pregnant while still teenagers, increasing the risk of complications during pregnancy or childbirth. These complications are the leading cause of death among older adolescents.
The purpose of this Act is to protect the physical and moral integrity of minors, guarantee their full development, and prohibit
ing the marriage or union of any person under 18 years of age.
I. Age Majority/Full Age: Condition to determine the full capacity to act of the person that consists in reaching a chronological age established from birth. The figure is motivated by the need for the person to have acquired sufficient intellectual and physical maturity to have a valid will to perform some acts that she could not previously due to her previously mentioned shortcomings. In much of the world, the age from which an individual is considered fully capable is usually between 18 and 21 for men and 18 for women.
When a person reaches the age of majority, it is presumed that they have full capacity to act, unless there is some type of legal incapacity. From that age of majority, responsibilities and obligations are acquired, but also greater rights and privileges such as the right to marry.
II. Child Marriage: Child marriage is any formal marriage or informal union where one or both of the parties are under 18 years of age.
SECTION I - MODIFICATION OF NATIONAL JURIS
I. The purpose of this Act is to modify internal member nations articles of their respectives Corpus Juris and or Civil Code, which regulate the capacity and
consent to marriage, prohibiting marriage in minors under 18 years of age.
I - ABILITY TO MARRIAGE OR UNION
peoplepersons over 18 years of age and older will have the capacity shall be allowed to marry, or be in a marriage or unionship in the European Union.
II. It shall be an illegal and punishable offence to practice services involving the marriage or union of persons under the age of 18.
SECTION III - IMPLEMENTATION, ENFORCEMENT AND PROTECTION
I. Member states shall close effective inmediatly all national offices involving the marriage of minors after the passage of this Act.
II. It shall be an illegal and punishable offence in all member states to permit cohabitation between people under 18 years of age with adults.
III. It shall be an illegal and punishable offence in all member states to provide or practice services involving the marriage or union of minors.
I. Breaches of this Act shall be considered a punishable offense in member states. Failure of member states to enforce this Act may be tried in the European Court of Justice.
IV II. All member states of the European Union are required to adjust their national law(s) with this Act effective inmediatly in 6 months time from its approval by the European Council.
Council Speaker and Councillor for Inquista