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Georgetown University Berkley Center, Washington, D.C.

When Does Protecting Faith Imperil Children?

Certain religious practices have implications for children--notably, child marriage, school attendance, and faith healing. Religious practices like early marriage or refusing to use medical help to treat preventable illness may harm children who have no say in the decisions made by parents or community leaders. This discussion draws on the recent volume The Contested Place of Religion in Family Law (2018) to explore these and other implications of a thick deference to family privacy and religious liberty.

Volume editor Robin Fretwell Wilson and Berkley Center Senior Fellow Katherine Marshall will examine current legal protections nationally and internationally, as well as gaps in protection, in a conversation moderated by Ambassador David Saperstein. They will focus on potential opportunities to act or regulate in ways that enhance the welfare of children without encroaching unnecessarily on religious liberty or the parent-child relationship. Berkley Center Managing Director Michael Kessler will provide opening remarks.

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