At least 45 percent of women surveyed across 13 countries reported that they or a woman they knew experienced some form of violence since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, revealed a survey by UN Women.
The report, released on 24 November, also revealed that women who experienced violence were 1.3 times more likely to report mental and emotional stress than those who had not. It was released to mark International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on 25 November.
The 13 countries included in the survey were Ukraine, Thailand, Paraguay, Nigeria, Albania, Bangladesh, Cameroon, Colombia, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Morocco.
Key Findings From UN Women Report
According to The New York Times, the report said:
Seven in 10 said they thought verbal or physical abuse by partner became more common
Three in 10 were of the opinion that violence against women, in their community, had increased
Four in 10 women felt more unsafe in public spaces
Six in 10 thought sexual harassment in public had worsened
Spousal Violence In India As Per NFHS-5
Data for the National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5), released on the same day showed a marginal decrease in violence experienced by married women between the age of 18-45.
While the NFHS-4, recorded during 2015-2016 showed 31.2 percent women experienced violence, the latest numbers show that it is 29.3 percent.
The survey was collected in two phases — January 2020, to March 2020 (prior to the Covid lockdown), and November, 2020, to January 2021 (post lockdown and pre second wave).
At least 1.5 percent of women surveyed said that they experienced some form of sexual violence by the time they turned 18. While 1.1 percent in urban areas said so, 1.6 percent said the same in rural areas.
Nationally, the number of women who experienced physical violence during pregnancy also came down marginally with 3.1 percent of those surveyed answering in affirmative. As per NFHS-4 3.9 percent women experienced violence during pregnancy.
However, experts have warned that this is just representative data – and cannot be taken as per unit as it is a survey covering 6.10 lakh households in India.
(With inputs from The New York Times.)