Campaign aims to strengthen marriages, reduce divorce rate in Florida

  • by: NaplesNews 02/03/09

TALLAHASSEE — The Florida Family Policy Council along with other pro-family groups and supporters from around the state announced Tuesday the launch of "Strong Marriages Florida," a new statewide campaign to help strengthen marriages in Florida.

Many of the same groups and leaders that passed the Florida Marriage Protection Amendment, to protect the definition of marriage as an institution, will appeal to the same network of church and community groups to continue to serve families and couples by working to strengthen existing and future marriages.

The Strong Marriages Florida is a three-year campaign to start a movement to encourage strong and stable marriages, assist those in crisis marriages and reduce the divorce rate by 10 percent. The effort has both a cultural and community component, as well as public policy components, according to the Florida Family Policy Council.

“Today, we are launching an initiative to serve the children, families, communities of Florida,” said John Stemberger, president and general counsel of the Florida Family Policy Council. "Florida has the highest annual number of reported divorces — more than any other state in the country. “The breakdown of families in our state brings not only high social costs to children whose lives are often devastated, but there is an enormous economic cost to taxpayers and to businesses. This is over whelming social issue that deserves our focused and strategic attention.”

The five goals of the campaign include:

1) Increasing the number of couples receiving pre-marital preparation.

2) Strengthening existing marriages and restoring crisis marriages.

3) Reducing the divorce rate in Florida by 10 percent

4) Save taxpayers the costs of family breakdown by about $100 million dollars annually

5) Creating community awareness and a positive culture of marriage which celebrates and respects the institution of marriage for the benefit of children, families and the common good of society.

For more information on the campaign or to become involved, visit