16% students suffer unwanted sexual experience
on 10/09/2013 00:00:00
In the first study of its kind, students' experiences of harassment, stalking, violence, and sexual assault were revealed by the Union of Students in Ireland.
Laura Harmon, USI vice president for equality and citizenship, said she hoped the results of Say Something will inform national campaigns in the future and raise awareness of supports.
"The victim is never to blame," she said. "USI hopes that this study will help to open up dialogue around these issues among the student body."
The study was the first of its kind and scale in Ireland, with 2,750 students of mixed gender and sexuality responding between Jan 10 and Feb 15. It found:
*One in six students (16%) experienced some form of unwanted sexual experience at their current third-level institution, with the figure rising to one in five for women;
*Just 3% of those reported it to gardaí;
*Acquaintances were identified as the perpetrators by most victims;
*11% of women were victims of unwanted sexual contact, and three out of 10 experienced comments with a sexual overtone that made them feel uncomfortable;
*More than 10% of men and 8% of women have had photographs or videos circulated online without their consent.
*Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender students accounted for 14.7% of respondents, but were more likely to have been the victims of physical violence, obsessive behaviour, or unwanted sexual experiences.