Some Statistics on Sexual Violence:
One in three women worldwide suffers rape or attempted rape during her lifetime.
(UN News Centre 2008, UN-backed TV series peels back silence surrounding worldwide sexual violence United Nations, New York, viewed 5 June 2008)
The overwhelming majority of perpetrators of sexual assault are men – with various sources of data showing from 93-99% of reported abusers being male.
(Australian Bureau of Statistics September 2004, Sexual Assault in Australia: A statistical overview, Cat. no. 4523.0, ABS, Canberra, pp.43-44)
Who Perpetrates Sexual Violence:
The results of the 2005 Personal Safety Survey in Australia gives some insights into who perpetrates sexual violence:
- Sexual assaults experienced by women in the previous 12 months to the report results showed that 78.2% of perpetrators were known to women, with 39% of perpetrators being a family member or friend and 21.1% a previous partner. For assaults that women had experienced since the age of 15, statistics were very similar.
- With sexual assault experienced as children, (under 15 years of age):
- For girls – the most common perpetrator was their father/step-father (16.5%) or another male relative (35.1%).
- For boys was a greater spread of who the perpetrators of the abuse were, however it was still only reported that 18.3% of perpetrators were strangers. (Morrison Z, 2006, pp.13-14).
(Morrison Z December 2006, ‘Results of the Personal Safety Survey 2005’ AWARE: ACSSA Newsletter,no.13, pp. 9-14.)
Personal Safety Survey 2005 – Higher Incidence of Assault on Women:
Since the age of 15, 5.5% (408,100) of men reported experiencing sexual violence compared to 19% (1,469,500) of women.
(Australian Bureau of Statistics August 2006, Personal Safety Survey Australia 2005, Cat. no. 4906.0, ABS, Canberra, p. 11.)
Children (before the age of 15) – Women were more likely to have been sexually abused than men – 12% ( 956,600) of women had been sexually abused compared to 4.5% (337,400) of men.
(Australian Bureau of Statistics August 2006, Personal Safety Survey Australia 2005, Cat. no. 4906.0, ABS, Canberra, p. 12.)
Data from the National Crime and Safety Survey (NCSS) of 2002 indicate that approximately one in seven adult female victims of sexual assault (14%) did not disclose the most recent incident to anyone.
(Australian Bureau of Statistics September 2004, Sexual Assault in Australia: A Statistical Overview, Cat. No. 4523.0, ABS, Canberra, p. 55)
Higher Incidence of Sexual Violence experienced by young people:
Personal Safety Survey Australia 2005
In the 12 months prior to the, younger women and men reported experiencing violence at higher rates than older women and men.
- 12% (117,000) of women aged 18–24 years experienced at least one incident of violence, compared to 6.5% (97,900) of women aged 35–44 years and 1.7% (42,100) of women aged 55 years and over.
- 31% (304,300) of men aged 18–24 years experienced at least one incident of violence, compared to 9.4% (138,700) of men aged 35–44 years and 2.8% (62,500) of men aged 55 years and over.
(Australian Bureau of Statistics August 2006, Personal Safety Survey Australia 2005, Cat. no. 4906.0, ABS, Canberra, p. 6.)