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Up to 70% of women in prostitution spent time in care.  45% report experiencing sexual abuse and 85% physical abuse during their childhoods.

Home Office (2006). A Coordinated Prostitution Strategy & Summary of Responses to ‘Paying the Price,’ London: UK Government.

68% of women in prostitution meet the criteria for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in the same range as victims of torture and combat veterans undergoing treatment

Ramsay, R. et al (1993).  ‘Psychiatric Morbidity in Survivors of Organized State Violence Including Torture’.  In British Journal of Psychiatry, 162:55-59.

2 women a week are killed by a male partner or a former partner.

Povey, D. (ed.), (2004, 2005) Crime in England and Wales; Supplementary Volume 1; Homicide and Gun Crime Home Office (2002/3, 2003/4) Home Office, London.

In 2007-8, 85% of recorded domestic abuse incidents in Scotland were violence against a woman committed by a man.

In a survey for Amnesty International, over 1 in 4 respondents in the UK thought a woman was partially or totally responsible for being raped if she was wearing sexy or revealing clothing, and more than 1 in 5 held the same view if a woman had had many sexual partners.

Amnesty UK (2005) Sexual Assault Research. Amnesty. London.

In New South Wales, brothels were decriminalised in 1995. In 1999, the number of brothels had increased exponentially to 400-500. The vast majority had no license to operate.

Jan Raymond, Coalition Against Trafficking in Women, quoted in ‘Acritical Examination of Responses to Prostitution in Four Countries’, by Bindel and Kelly, 2004. Pg. 13

At least 32% of children, mostly girls, experience some form of child sexual abuse

HM Government (2007) Cross-government Action Plan on Sexual Violence and Abuse. Home Office. London.

“Violence against women is perhaps the most shameful human rights violation, and it is perhaps the most pervasive. It knows no boundaries of geography, culture or wealth. As long as it continues, we cannot claim to be making real progress towards equality, development and peace.”

Kofi Annan, Former UN Secretary-General.

Studies have identified a range of possible factors that discourage women from reporting rape to the police. These include: Not recognising the incident as rape; Fear of not being believed; Fear of being blamed, and, Lack of confidence in the criminal justice process.

L Kelly and L Regan, ‘Rape, Still a Forgotten Issue’, Child and Woman Abuse Studies Unit, London Metropolitan University, 2003.

The rape conviction rate in Scotland is 3.7%. Out of a reported 908 rapes in Scotland in 2007-08, only 88 were prosecuted and only 34 cases led to conviction.  Rape is the most under-reported serious crime. Police and rape crisis groups agree that probably no more than 20% of all rapes are reported.;