Advocacy

Our Services » Advocacy

When legal or social issues affect our membership’s marriage-related duties, JPus gets involved.

Advocating on behalf of members: Supporting legislation, engaging the media, training officiants

Are there policies or legislation brewing in your community that affect justices of the peace? Let JPus know – we’re here to support you!

Quoting the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.,“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”  At the Justice of the Peace Association, we work for the change we want to see. We are an inclusive organization that believes in the equality of all people. Our activities reflect these values.

Amateur Marriage Officiants

Whether they are state-sanctioned solemnizers or on-line ministers, these lay-officiants give professional JPs a bad name. Amateur officiants frequently fail to meet statutory requirements. This leaves couples without a marriage certificate, and burdens town clerks. JPus represents our membership through public discourse in the media, with state governments and legislatures. Read more.

Child Marriages

Child Marriage is not only a problem in far-off countries. It happens right here in the United States, and it could affect you if you are asked to perform the ceremony. As of July 2020, 46 states allow children to be married – oftentimes girls to much older men who would otherwise be charged with statutory rape. This is a problem that affects marriage officiants. As such, the Justice of the Peace Association is joining with allies to end child marriage. We established a partnership with Unchained at Last and joined the Coalition to End Child Marriage. In addition, we’ve submitted letters to state legislators and governors advocating for laws requiring a person to be 18 years old to wed. Read more.

Human Trafficking & Forced Marriage

It might surprise some to find the trade of humans, treating them as objects to be bought or sold or otherwise used for personal benefit, to be an area that affects marriage officiants. But, sadly, it is. Marriage can be used as a gateway into sexual exploitation or slavery and forced labor. It happens to adults and children, men and women. JPus is doing what we can so officiants will recognize situations. More about human trafficking and forced marriage.

Marriage Equality

Being an outspoken supporter of couples who love each other is a natural extension of our commitment to represent our membership and the couples they serve. The Justice of the Peace Association was an early and vocal advocate for marriage equality before it became law. Finally, on June 26, 2015, Obergefell v Hodges was decided by the US Supreme Court. We stand together in solidarity with our LGBTQ friends. To this end, we are ready to mobilize if there is a threat to gay Americans’ marriage rights. Read more.

COVID

Navigating marriages since the novel coronavirus changed our world is challenging. Consequently, the Justice of the Peace Association is prioritizing safety. Of course for our officiants, and also our couples and the community. We are providing educational information and advocating with the media and state leaders. Read more.

Members only: Join in the active conversation about these issues that matter to you on JPus’ Facebook page. Not a member yet? Join here.