Dec. 6 is the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. A new survey by Statistics Canada finds thirty per cent of all women aged 15 and older — some 4.7 million — were victims of sexual assault outside an intimate relationships at least once since the age of 15. (Black Press Media File)

Dec. 6 is the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. A new survey by Statistics Canada finds thirty per cent of all women aged 15 and older — some 4.7 million — were victims of sexual assault outside an intimate relationships at least once since the age of 15. (Black Press Media File)

New survey finds 4.7 million women over 15 were victims of sexual assault in Canada

Some 1.2 million men (eight per cent) report having been sexually assaulted since age 15

Thirty per cent of all women aged 15 and older — some 4.7 million — were victims of sexual assault outside an intimate relationships at least once since the age of 15.

This is one of the figures appearing in a new report from Statistics Canada into gender-based violence and unwanted sexual behaviour in Canada. The report details initial findings of a 2018 survey.

The report defines gender-based violence as violence committed against someone based on their gender identity, gender expression or perceived gender and encompasses a broad range of behaviours ranging from those which do not qualify necessarily as criminal (like unwanted sexual attention in public) to those that qualify as criminal acts (like physical and sexual assault).

RELATED: #MeToo at work: B.C. women share horrifyingly common sexual assaults

The findings appear on the eve of the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women 2019 in Canada and within the larger context of the #MeToo movement.

Almost 40 per cent of women and 35 per cent of men 15 years and older — some 11 million Canadians — reported experiencing at least one physical or sexual assault since age 15, with three out of 10 women having reported a sexual assault. By comparison, 1.2 million men (eight per cent) report having been sexually assaulted since age 15.

Looking at physical assaults, one-third of men (33 per cent) and just over one-quarter of women (26 per cent) told the survey that they have experienced at least one physical assault since age 15.

RELATED: Victoria vigil to commemorate 30th anniversary of l’Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal massacre

The survey also finds that the “vast majority” of incidents of violent crime did not come to the attention of police. Five per cent of women said that the most serious incident of sexual assault they experienced came to the attention of police either from themselves or otherwise. Meanwhile, 26 per cent of women and 33 per cent men who were physically assaulted said police found out about the most serious incident.

Women were also more likely to experience unwanted sexual behaviour in public places, at work and online, with the proviso that the difference in online harassment was less stark.

Other factors also shaped the level of unwanted sexual behaviour. Young women aged 15 to 24 were three times as likely to experience unwanted sexual behaviour than older women, whereas women belonging to a sexual minority were 2.8 times as likely than women outside that category.

Accounting for demographic factors, sexual orientation was also the largest risk factor for men, with men belonging to a sexual minority four times as likely to experience unwanted sexual behaviour in public than heterosexual men.


Like us on Facebook and follow @wolfgang_depner

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Grandmothers to Grandmothers is a campaign that connects Canadian grandmothers with grandmothers in Africa who are caring for children orphaned by AIDS. Here, they are in Kakuto, Uganda in 2018. (Kibuuka Mukisa Oscar photo)
Greater Victoria and African grandmothers celebrate solidarity with virtual concert

Grandmothers to Grandmothers supports women in Africa caring for children orphaned by AIDS

Naloxone is used to treat opioid overdoses. (Black Press Media files)
Island Health issues overdose advisory for Greater Victoria

The advisory directs bystanders to an overdose to call 911 and administer naloxone

A vehicle that was driven through the wall of a parkade at Uptown Shopping Centre and into the nearby Walmart on April 9 was removed through another hole in the wall later that night. (Photo via Saanich Police Department and Ayush Kakkar)
Driver who crashed into Uptown Walmart likely suffering mental health crisis, police say

Man in his early 20s drove through a parkade wall, no serious injuries reported

Supporter Gordy Dodd cheers on HeroWork Victoria executive director Trevor Botkin, who will be in a lift for 36 hours beside Dodd’s Furniture and Mattress on April 16 and 17 to raise funds for the organization’s next project, a makeover of the Salvation Army’s Addiction and Rehabilitation Centre on Johnson Street. (Courtesy HeroWork Victoria)
HeroWork Victoria tackles makeover of Salvation Army rehab centre

Executive director to spend 36 hours living in a lift as fundraiser

West Shore RCMP is seeking information about a collision involving a car and a bicycle on Six Mile Road, near the Island Highway, at 11:30 a.m. on April 7. (Black Press Media file photo)
West Shore RCMP seeks information about collision between bike, car

Collision occured on Six Mile Road on April 7 and a bystander got the blue car’s plate number

Restaurant patrons enjoy the weather on a patio in Vancouver, B.C., Monday, April 5, 2021. The province has restricted indoor dining at all restaurants in B.C. due to a spike in COVID-19 numbers. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 indoor dining, drinking ban extending into May

Restaurant association says patio rules to be clarified

Two men were seen removing red dresses alongside the Island Highway in Oyster Bay. (Submitted photo)
Two men filmed removing red dresses from trees on highway near Ladysmith

Activists hung the dresses to raise awareness for Vancouver Island’s Murdered/Missing Women & Girls

B.C. Premier John Horgan speaks at the B.C. legislature. (B.C. government)
Tougher COVID-19 restrictions in B.C., including travel, still ‘on the table’: Horgan

John Horgan says travel restrictions will be discussed Wednesday by the provincial cabinet

RCMP on scene yesterday at the altercation at the trailer park. (Submitted photo)
Violent altercation at Port Hardy trailer park sends one to hospital

Police say man confronted another over airsoft shooting, then was attacked with a weapon

John Albert Buchanan was found guilty of manslaughter in the 2017 death of Richard Sitar. Pictured here, Buchanan walking to the court in Nanaimo last year. (Karl Yu/News Bulletin)
Six years including time served for Nanaimo man in bludgeoning death

John Albert Buchanan sentenced in B.C. Supreme Court in Nanaimo for death of Richard Sitar

Flow Academy is not accepting membership applications from anybody who has received a dose of the vaccine, according to a password-protected membership application form. (Submitted image)
B.C. martial arts gym refusing patrons who have been vaccinated, wear masks

Interior Health has already issued a ticket to Flow Academy for non-compliance with public health orders

Guinevere, lovingly referred to by Jackee Sullivan and her family as Gwenny, is in need of a gynecological surgery. The family is raising money to help offset the cost of the procedure. (Jackee Sullivan/Special to Langley Advance Times)
Langley lizard’s owners raise funds for gynecological surgery

The young reptile is scheduled for operation on Tuesday

Facebook screenshot of the sea lion on Holberg Road. (Greg Clarke Facebook video)
VIDEO: Sea lion randomly spotted on remote B.C. logging road

Greg Clarke was driving home on the Holberg Road April 12, when he saw a large sea lion.

Defence counsel for the accused entered two not guilty pleas by phone to Grand Forks Provincial Court Tuesday, Jan. 12. File photo
B.C. seafood company owner fined $25K for eating receipt, obstructing DFO inspection

Richmond company Tenshi Seafood is facing $75,000 in fines as decided March 4 by a provincial court judge

Most Read