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10th Mar 2021

97% of young women in UK have been sexually harassed, according to survey

Claudia McInerney

Almost all young women in the UK have been subjected to sexual harassment, a survey by UN Women UK has found

97% of women aged between 18 and 24 say they have been sexually harassed, while 80% of women generally said they had experienced sexual harassment in a public place, according to a new survey.

“This is a human rights crisis. It’s just not enough for us to keep saying ‘this is too difficult a problem for us to solve’ – it needs addressing now,” Claire Barnett, executive director of UN Women UK, told The Guardian.

“We are looking at a situation where younger women are constantly modifying their behaviour in an attempt to avoid being objectified or attacked, and older women are reporting serious concerns about personal safety if they ever leave the house in the dark – even during the daytime in winter.”

The charity aims to reduce sexual harassment against women of all ages.

96% of a total of 1,000 respondents did not report the incident of harassment, with almost half respondents saying it would not change anything, according to The Guardian.

Some of the victims who had been groped, followed and coerced into sexual activity felt that the incident was not serious enough to report, according to UN Women UK.