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Forced marriage

Understanding the needs of people who have been forced into marriage

Following the criminalisation of forced marriage in Australia in 2013, the Australian Government requested that Red Cross expand the Support for Trafficked People program to also assist people who have been forced into marriage.

As a humanitarian organisation dedicated to meeting the needs of vulnerable people in the community, Red Cross aims to provide the most appropriate and comprehensive service it can for people who have been forced into marriage. We recognise that in order to do so, we need a better understanding of the challenges affecting this client group and how best to address them.

Recognising that people who have been forced into marriage may have different needs to those of people who have been trafficked, the Australian Government has funded a 12-month scoping project to assist Red Cross to determine how best to respond to the needs of this vulnerable group.

Project objectives:

  • Develop relationships with organisations already working with this client group
  • Develop an understanding of client needs and identify potential gaps in support services
  • Explore possible referral pathways that will address client needs
  • Develop a model of service delivery
  • Make recommendations to government based on our findings


Working together

We look forward to working collaboratively with organisations that have experience and knowledge in working with people affected by forced marriage.

Red Cross would like to engage with a wide range of organisations, services and sectors.

This includes:

  • Community groups
  • Domestic Violence organisations
  • Settlement services
  • Children and Youth Services 
  • Education providers
  • Women's organisations and peak bodies

If you would like to share your knowledge on forced marriage, please contact


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