Research shows that 65% of all cases appearing before the Georgia Supreme Court are related to domestic issues, according to former Georgia Chief Justice Leah Sears. There is compelling data correlating family fragmentation and the core social issues we face in our community.
Right from the Start is committed to conducting, monitoring and promoting local and national research focused on marriage related issues.
“Nearly every major social problem has deep roots in the failure of adults to form and sustain healthy marriages. There are other causes of these social problems, of course, such as economic dislocations and the decline of civic life and social responsibility in the United States, but the disconnection of childrearing from marriage ranks high on the list of what ails our society and our communities,”
– Bill Doherty
Reviving Marriage in America
Building Prosperity in Columbus-Muscogee County. A community-wide initiative to build prosperity by reducing poverty commissioned the Fanning Institute at the University of Georgia in 2008 to conduct two pieces of research on Muscogee County: an analysis of the root causes of poverty in the county and a study of best practices to address those causes. The researchers identified six factors related to county poverty rates, one of which was marriage. Click here to read full report.
The State of the Family in Muscogee County.
Columbus State University is conducting baseline research on the attitudes and behaviors of Muscogee County residents concerning marriage and the family.
Click here to read full report.
The Taxpayer Costs of Divorce and Unwed
Childbearing: First-Ever Estimates for
the Nation and All Fifty States. A new report
quantifies that family fragmentation costs American taxpayers at least $112 billion dollars annually. These costs are due to increased taxpayer expenditures for antipoverty, criminal justice and school nutrition programs, and through lower levels of taxes paid by individuals whose adult productivity has been negatively influenced by growing up in poverty caused by family fragmentation.
Click here to read full report.
With this Ring…A Survey on Marriage in Georgia. This report provides data about Georgian's
attitudes about marriage and the health of the institution across the state. Click here to download full report.
Marriage and Family Wellness: Corporate America's Business? A recent report by the Marriage CoMission estimates $6 billion is lost by American businesses each year due to decreased productivity. This amount is based on increased absenteeism and presenteeism (being physically present but mentally absent), decreased health, increased anxiety and stress and increased health insurance costs. For an average employee making $20/hour, the projected cost of that employee divorcing is over $ 8,000.
Click here to download full report.
Why Marriage Matters, Second Edition: Twenty-Six Conclusions from the
Sixteen of the top scholars on family life have re-issued a joint report on the importance of marriage. First released in 2002, the newly revised edition highlights five new themes in marriage-related research. Institute for American Values. Click here for ordering information.
Marriage: America's Greatest Weapon Against Child Poverty
Child poverty is an ongoing national concern, but few are aware that its principal cause is the absence of married fathers in the home. Marriage remains America’s strongest anti-poverty weapon, yet it continues to decline. As husbands disappear from the home, poverty and welfare dependence will increase, and children and parents will suffer as a result. Since marital decline drives up child poverty and welfare dependence, and since the poor aspire to healthy marriage but lack the norms, understanding, and skills to achieve it, it is reasonable for government to take active steps to strengthen marriage. Just as government discourages youth from dropping out of school, it should provide information that will help people to form and maintain healthy marriages and delay childbearing until they are married and economically stable. In particular, clarifying the severe shortcomings of the “child first, marriage later” philosophy to potential parents in lower-income communities should be a priority.
To access the entire document, click this link