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Repair Marriage and Economic Woes with National Marriage Week USA (Feb. 7-14)

Contact: Sheila Weber, National Marriage Week USA, 646-322-6853

FRONT ROYAL, Va., Jan. 31, 2012 /Christian Newswire/ -- National Marriage Week USA (www.nationalmarriageweekusa.org) is growing fast in just its third year, posting thousands of marriage classes across the nation and building collaborative efforts for one week a year -- February 7-14 -- to strengthen marriages, reduce divorce, and increase the marriage rate, which curtails poverty, benefits children, and builds financial stability for our nation and for individuals.

"Our campaign to strengthen marriage is quite timely," said Sheila Weber, executive director of National Marriage Week USA, the week leading up to Valentine's Day each year. "A recent Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census data said that in 1960, 72% of all adults ages 18 and older were married; today just 51% are -- a record low," she continued. "A new book, 'Coming Apart,' also explains that a retreat from marriage among the working class is one key factor in the growing economic divide."

"Re-building our economy is tied to rebuilding marriages," said Sheila Weber, executive director of National Marriage Week USA (www.nationalmarriageweekusa.org). "Taxpayers spend at least $112 billion a year for divorce and unwed childbearing. Marriage brings vastly more financial stability to individuals," she continued. "Research shows that virtually all of the growth in child poverty in the United States since 1970 can be attributed to the nation's retreat from marriage."

National Marriage Week USA is part of an international marriage week movement in 16 countries around the world. It seeks to:

  1. elevate marriage as a national issue with the media and policy makers,
  2. promote the benefits of marriage,
  3. provide a new national clearinghouse of existing, trusted marriage classes and conferences to help couples find help for their own marriages or to help others

"The economic cost is huge -- only one example is prisons. Most prisoners come from broken homes or have grown up without a father in their lives. In 2009, California judges ordered the state to release 27 percent of its prisoners due to overcrowding," Weber continued. "And women and children are more likely to become impoverished through divorce."

"But there are solutions. National Marriage Week USA is a collaborative effort among many groups to let people know they can learn how to have a better marriage -- most couples do not know where to get the help they need," Weber said.