TICKER: 100 prison inmates exchange vows in mass wedding ceremony in jail
More than 100 inmates married at a Mexican border prison on Friday in a collective ceremony meant to give their families legal rights for visits and for court proceedings.
The Civil Registry Office director of Chihuahua state, who officiated, said the mass wedding is part of a government’s strategy to regularise the inmates so they can better incorporate back into life once they end their sentence.
The couples said “I do” collectively.
Mexican prisons often hold collective weddings – but this is one of the largest in the region, which has been hit hard by drug violence in recent years.
The head of the prison, Carlos Daniel Gutierrez, said the state’s governor was the one who came up with the idea.
“He has given us the order to support the inmates, so those families that were in a common-law marriage or that didn’t have a way of getting married are able to get their conjugal visits and make the family the priority. So it’s better that they were legally married,” he said.
Under the watchful eyes of prison guards and police dogs, more than 100 couples enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere and waited for their turn to exchange rings.
Some of the women dressed in wedding gowns for the ceremony, others simply held flowers on their special day.