Reporting Sexual Violence

Women in peaceful, developed countries are more likely to report sexual assault to the police if it happens to them. Radha Basu, senior correspondent for The Straits Times, sheds light on sexual assault in Singapore.

Excerpt from Radha Basu’s Straits Times article, “Sexual crimes remain under radar in S’pore

Interestingly, international statistics show that largely peaceful, developed countries have far higher rates of reporting sexual violence than developing nations with well-documented histories of violence, war and strife.

Switzerland, for instance, reported 79.5 such crimes per 100,000 people in 2011, Canada had 77.4, New Zealand had 75, and Finland 60 – all higher than Asian countries such as South Korea (40.3), Singapore (29.8), Japan (6.4) and India (5.9).

It could thus be argued that these statistics are more a reflection of women’s empowerment rather than the lack of physical safety in any given country.

Significantly, despite many of these countries offering civil damages to victims too, the number of false cases remains low.

A government study of nearly 5,700 rape cases in Britain from 2011 to 2012 showed that there was enough evidence to prosecute the complainant for making false allegations in only 35 cases.

At 84 crimes per 100,000 people, Britain has a high reporting rate for sexual offences. Other smaller studies there and in the United States and Australia have put false reporting rates at between 2 per cent and 8 per cent.

This article was published in The Straits Times on 28th November, 2013. Read the full article here.

Featured Image: ht_five


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