Half of 18-24 year-old women say they've been sexually harassed in a public place in past 5 years

Matthew SmithHead of Data Journalism
October 19, 2017, 1:06 PM GMT+0

Sexual comments and jokes are the most common forms of harassment women are subjected to

The increasing number of allegations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein has put the harassment of women into the spotlight.

YouGov conducted research for Channel 5 on the issue in late September (about three weeks before the Weinstein story broke). It reveals that the majority (52%) of 18-24 year old women say they have experienced sexual harassment in a public place in the last five years. Among British women of all ages the figure is 24%, with older women less likely to have been harassed than young women.

Streets and pubs, clubs or bars are the places where harassment is most likely to occur, with over six in ten 18-24 year-old women who say they have been harassed stating that it happened to them in the street (64%) or in a pub, club or bar (61%).

One third (34%) of young women who had been harassed also report that it has occured at public events such as festivals, concerts or sports matches, three in ten (30%) state it happened on public transport, and a quarter (25%) say it has occurred in the workplace.

The overwhelming majority of those women who have been harassed in the last five years say they have never reported such harassment to the police or other authority figures. Among women aged 18-24 who have been subjected to harassment, more than nine in ten (92%) have never reported it to an authority figure, compared to only 5% who have.

Older women are more likely to have reported harassment, but even then the figures are relatively low, with one in five (21%) 50-64 year-olds who have suffered harassment making a report, compared to 76% who have never done so.

Close to six in ten young women have suffered uncomfortable sexual comments

YouGov also asked women whether or not they have ever been subjected to various forms of sexual harassment. The most common form young women have received are verbal comments of a sexual nature, with approaching six in ten (58%) women aged 18-24 saying that someone had made sexual remarks to them that made them feel uncomfortable.

Additionally, half of young women (48%) said that they had been made to feel uncomfortable by jokes of a sexual nature, and 38% had experienced inappropriate touching. A further 23% had received inappropriate emails, letters or texts, 17% had been inappropriately hugged and 15% had been sent pictures or photos of a sexual nature.

Photo: Getty

See the full results here

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