The Secretary Generals database on violence against women
The Secretary Generals database on violence against women

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Italian National Statistic Institute (ISTAT) survey on violence against women, 2006


Country: Italy

Year: 2006

Type of measure: Dedicated violence against women survey

Form of violence: Domestic violence | Marital rape | Sexual violence

Level of government: National

Brief description:

In 2006 the National Statistic Institute (ISTAT) undertook a survey focused, for the first time, on physical and sexual violence against women. The sample includes 25 thousand women aged between 16 and 70 from across the country who were telephone interviewed from January to October 2006.

The survey gives a measure of three different types of violence against women: physical, sexual and psychological violence, inside the family (from partner or ex-partner) and outside family (from an unknown person, acquaintances, a friend, a colleague, a family friend, a relative etc..).

The main results of the survey were as follows:

  • 6 million 743 thousand women, between 16 and 70 years of age, are estimated to be victims of physical or sexual violence during their lifetime (31,9% of women in the considered age group) - 23,7% women were victims of sexual violence, 18,8% of physical violence.
  • The highest rates of violence were observed among young women between 16 and 24 (16,3%) and between 25 and 34 (7,9%). 3,5% of women were victims of sexual violence and 2,7% of physical violence.
  • In almost all cases, violence is not reported to the police. The hidden part of violence is very big and it reaches 96% of violence acts by non-partners and 93% by partners. Even in the case of rapes almost all of them (91,6%) are not reported to the police. The share of women not talking with anyone about the suffered violence is substantial (33,9% among violence at the hands of a partner and 24% by a non-partner).
  • Women are victims of different forms of violence. A third of the victims suffer from both physical and sexual violence. The majority of the victims suffer from several violence episodes.
  • Partners are responsible for the highest share among all forms of physical violence investigated and, in a larger extent, also for some kind of sexual violence such as rape and undesired sexual intercourses, suffered for fear of consequences. In fact, according to the survey, 21% of victims suffered sexual violence both in and outside their family, 22,6% only by the partner, 56,4% only by men other than their partner.
  • Domestic violence acts are for the most part serious.
  • Two million 77 thousand women were stalked by partners at the moment of separation or after they split up and were particularly frightened by this (18,8%).
  • 7 million 134 thousand women were or are victims of psychological violence: the most widespread forms are: isolation and attempted isolation (46,7%), control (40,7%), financial violence (30,7%) and berating (23,8%), followed by intimidations (7,8%).
  • 690 thousand women were victims of repeated violence by partners and they had children at the moment of the violence.

Associated keywords:

Evaluation:  No known evaluation undertaken to date.

Sources of information:
Response of the Government of Italy to the questionnaire on violence against women, June 2009

Date information on this measure was last updated: 07-24-2009