Group proposes ballot measure requiring pre-marriage education

Jan. 20, 2014 at 5:12 PM
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DENVER, Jan. 20 (UPI) -- A proposed ballot initiative in Colorado would require couples to take a mandatory pre-marriage education classes, officials said.

The Colorado Marriage Education Act would require first time brides- and grooms-to-be to receive 10 hours of pre-wedding marriage education, the Denver Post reported Monday.

If either party is marrying for the second time, the requirement is increased to up to a minimum of 20 hours, and 30 hours for a people on their third marriages.

The purpose of the act is to "better prepare individuals going into marriage to fulfill their new roles as spouse and potentially as parent, to furthermore protect children given that marriage is the foundation of a family unit," said David Schel and Sharon Tekolian of California-based Kids Against Divorce, the group that proposed the ballot measure.

Kids Against Divorce plans to introduce similar measures in other states across the country, but chose propose it first in Colorado, the newspaper said.

Advocates for the initiative need to gather 86,105 valid signatures by the Aug. 4 for the measure to be included on the November ballot.

Meanwhile, some Colorado residents have voiced outrage over the proposed measure.

"This is the stupidest thing I have ever heard," said Alyx Reese-Giles, who was married for the third time in November. "The government has no business deciding what education people should or should not get before entering into marriage. Marriage is about communication and being ready to commit, and no class is going to teach you that."

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