Australian Bureau of Statistics

Rate the ABS website
ABS Home > Statistics > By Catalogue Number
ABS @ Facebook ABS @ Twitter ABS RSS ABS Email notification service
4906.0 - Personal Safety, Australia, 2012  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 11/12/2013   
   Page tools: Print Print Page Print all pages in this productPrint All RSS Feed RSS Bookmark and Share Search this Product  
Contents >> Selected characteristics of different types of violence

SELECTED CHARACTERISTICS OF THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF VIOLENCE


The 2012 PSS collected detailed information from men and women aged 18 years and over about the characteristics and actions taken following an incident of violence.

The characteristics and actions taken following an incident of violence differ depending on the type of violence a person experienced and the gender of the perpetrator. Due to constraints on the length of an interview and the load placed on respondents, it was not possible to collect detailed information about each incident of violence a person had experienced since the age of 15. Instead, detailed information was collected about their most recent incident since the age of 15 for each of the eight different types of violence:
  • Sexual assault by a male;
  • Sexual assault by a female;
  • Sexual threat by a male;
  • Sexual threat by a female;
  • Physical assault by a male;
  • Physical assault by a female;
  • Physical threat by a male; and
  • Physical threat by a female.

A 'most recent' incident method was used to select a sample of incidents. If the most recent incident occurred more than 20 years ago, detailed information was not collected due to difficulties associated with recalling the incident. As information is only collected in relation to the most recent incident, rates will not reflect the total prevalence of different characteristics (Refer to Endnote 1 for further information).

The characteristics of the different types of violence are not able to be added to produce a total for characteristics of "violence". Conceptually it is invalid to add together data about the characteristics for the different types of violence, as actions a person may take could differ depending on the type of violence experienced. This would also double count all persons who have experienced more than one type of violence (Refer to Endnote 2 for an example).

Information is presented in the tables, where possible, for each of the eight types of violence. However, some estimates, relating to types of violence with low prevalence rates, are subject to high sampling error. Therefore it was not always possible to directly compare characteristics about what happens for each of the eight types of violence.

In the section below comparisons have been made for the most prevalent of the eight types of violence, that is physical assault by a male. This information relates to men's and women's most recent incident of physical assault by a male since the age of 15 (that occurred in the past 20 years). For further information about other types of violence, e.g. physical assault by a female, refer to Tables 16 to 20.

Whilst many characteristics were collected in the PSS about what happens when a person experiences violence, five characteristics of men's and women's experience of physical assault by a male have been assessed below:
  • Whether sought advice or support about most recent incident;
  • Whether police contacted about most recent incident;
  • Involvement of alcohol and drugs in most recent incident;
  • Location of most recent incident; and
  • Whether took time off work in the 12 months after the most recent incident.


HELP SEEKING BEHAVIOURS - WHETHER SOUGHT ADVICE OR SUPPORT ABOUT MOST RECENT INCIDENT OF VIOLENCE

The 2012 PSS collected information from men and women aged 18 years and over about whether they had sought advice or support about their most recent incident of violence (for each of the eight different types of violence), including advice or support from: formal sources such as health professionals, support services, police (etc.); as well as from informal sources such as a friend or family member (Refer to Endnote 3 for a definition of advice or support). Table 16 shows whether men and women had sought advice or support about their most recent incident of violence by type of violence and sex of perpetrator.

Whether sought advice or support about most recent incident of physical assault by a male

Graph Image for OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED PHYSICAL ASSAULT BY A MALE(a), Proportion who sought advice or support (b)

Footnote(s): (a) Since the age of 15. Excludes incidents that occurred more than 20 years ago. (b) About their most recent incident of physical assault by a male. (a) Includes formal and informal sources of advice or support. For further information refer to Glossary.

Source(s): Personal Safety, Australia



In comparing men and women who had experienced physical assault by a male in the past 20 years, women were more likely to seek advice or support about their most recent incident of physical assault by a male than men:
  • An estimated 68% of women (1,168,600 out of the 1,716,300 women who had been physically assaulted by a male) compared to 45% of men (1,043,000 out of the 2,322,800 men who had been physically assaulted by a male) had sought advice or support after their most recent incident of physical assault by a male.


POLICE INVOLVEMENT - WHETHER POLICE CONTACTED ABOUT MOST RECENT INCIDENT OF ASSAULT

The 2012 PSS collected information from men and women aged 18 years and over about whether the police had been contacted (by the respondent or by someone else) about their most recent in incident of assault (for each of the four different types of assault - Note this was not asked for threats). Table 17 shows whether men and women had contacted the police about their most recent incident of assault by type of assault and sex of perpetrator. Information is also provided for those who had experienced their most recent incident in the 12 months prior to the survey.

Whether police contacted about most recent incident of physical assault by a male

Graph Image for OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED PHYSICAL ASSAULT BY A MALE(a), Proportion who did not contact police (b)

Footnote(s): (a) Since the age of 15. Excludes incidents that occurred more than 20 years ago. (b) about their most recent incident of physical assault by a male. (c) Includes where the respondent contacted the police or where someone else contacted the police about the most recent incident.

Source(s): Personal Safety, Australia



In comparing men and women who had experienced physical assault by a male in the past 20 years, there were no significant differences between men's and women's likelihood of police contact about their most recent incident of physical assault by a male.
  • An estimated 68% of men (1,577,200 of the 2,322,800 men who had been physically assaulted by a male) had not been in contact with the police after their most recent incident of physical assault by a male.
  • An estimated 67% of women (1,153,700 of the 1,716,300 women who had been physically assaulted by a male) had not been in contact with the police after their most recent incident of physical assault by a male.


INVOLVEMENT OF ALCOHOL OR DRUGS IN MOST RECENT INCIDENT OF VIOLENCE

The 2012 PSS collected information from men and women aged 18 years and over about whether they perceived alcohol or drugs had been involved in their most recent incident of violence (for each of the eight different types of violence) and how it was perceived that alcohol or drugs had contributed, including whether: they were under the influence of alcohol or drugs; if they believed the perpetrator was under the influence of alcohol or drugs; and/or if alcohol or drugs contributed in other ways (refer to Endnote 4). Table 18 shows whether men and women perceived drugs and/or alcohol were involved in their most recent incident of violence by type of violence and sex of perpetrator.

Involvement of alcohol or drugs in most recent incident of physical assault by a male

Graph Image for OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED PHYSICAL ASSAULT BY A MALE (a), Proportion where alcohol or drugs contributed (b)

Footnote(s): (a) Since the age of15. Excludes incidents that occurred more than 20 years ago. (b) in their most recent incident of physical assault by a male. (c) Based on the respondent's perception of whether alcohol or drugs contributed.

Source(s): Personal Safety, Australia



In comparing men and women who had experienced physical assault by a male in the past 20 years and the involvement of alcohol or drugs in their most recent incident, it was more likely for men than for women for alcohol or drugs to have been involved in their most recent incident of physical assault by a male:
  • An estimated 68% of men (1,571,900 out of the 2,322,800 men who had been physically assaulted by a male) compared to 53% of women (917,200 out of the 1,716,300 women who had been physically assaulted by a male) reported that alcohol or drugs had been involved in their most recent incident of physical assault by a male.

In assessing how alcohol and drugs contributed to a person's most recent incident of physical assault by a male in the past 20 years, it was more often the perpetrator, rather than the respondent, who was likely to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs (refer to Endnote 4)):
  • Of the estimated 1,571,900 men who reported that alcohol or drugs had been involved in their most recent incident of physical assault by a male in the past 20 years, an estimated 1,498,100 men (65% of the 2,322,800 men who had been physically assaulted by a male) reported that the perpetrator had been under the influence of alcohol or drugs and 715,100 men (31% of the 2,322,800 men who had been physically assaulted by a male) reported that they had been under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Of the estimated 917,200 women who reported that alcohol or drugs had been involved in their most recent incident of physical assault by a male in the past 20 years, an estimated 874,700 women (51% of the 1,716,300 women who had been physically assaulted by a male) reported that the perpetrator had been under the influence of alcohol or drugs and 132,700 women (7.7% of the 1,716,300 women who had been physically assaulted by a male) reported that they had been under the influence of alcohol or drugs.


LOCATION OF MOST RECENT INCIDENT OF ASSAULT

The 2012 PSS collected information from men and women aged 18 years and over about the location of their most recent incident of violence for each of the eight different types of violence. Table 19 shows the location of men's and women's most recent incident of assault (for each of the four different types of assault) by type of assault and sex of perpetrator.

Location of most recent incident of physical assault by a male

Graph Image for OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED PHYSICAL ASSAULT BY A MALE (a), Location of the most recent incident

Footnote(s): (a) Since the age of 15. Excludes incidents that occurred more than 20 years ago. (b) Respondents were provided examples of "pub, nightclub, sporting venue etc." (c) Respondents were provided examples of "street, laneway, park, carpark." (d) Includes place of study, at a motel/serviced apartments, while using or waiting for public transport, in a car/truck/ute etc., and other.

Source(s): Personal Safety, Australia



In comparing men and women who had experienced physical assault by a male in the past 20 years:
  • Women were more likely than men to have experienced physical assault by a male in their home. An estimated 62% of women (1,055,200 out of the 1,716,300 women who had been physically assaulted by a male) compared to 8.4% of men (195,800 out of the 2,322,800 men who had been physically assaulted by a male) had experienced their most recent incident of physical assault by a male in their home.
  • Men were more likely than women to have experienced physical assault by a male at a place of entertainment or recreation or at an outside location. An estimated 34% of men (793,100 out of the 2,322,800 men who had been physically assaulted by a male) compared to 5.3% of women (90,700 out of the 1,716,300 women who had been physically assaulted by a male) had experienced their most recent incident of physical assault by a male at a place of entertainment or recreation (e.g. pub, nightclub, sporting venue). Further, an estimated 27% of men (630,700 out of the 2,322,800 men who had been physically assaulted by a male) compared to 7.7% of women (131,600 out of the 1,716,300 women who had been physically assaulted by a male) had experienced their most recent incident of physical assault by a male at an outside location (e.g. street, laneway, park, car park).

Refer to Table 19 for information about the location of other types of violence.


WHETHER TOOK TIME OFF WORK IN THE 12 MONTHS AFTER MOST RECENT INCIDENT OF ASSAULT

The 2012 PSS collected information from men and women aged 18 years and over about whether any time was taken off work in the 12 months after the most recent incident of violence (for each of the four different types of assault - Note this was not asked for threats). Table 20 shows whether men and women took time off work after their most recent incident of assault by type of assault and sex of perpetrator.

Whether took time off work in the 12 months after the most recent incident of physical assault by a male

Graph Image for OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO EXPERIENCED PHYSICAL ASSAULT BY A MALE(a), Proportion who took time off work after the incident (b)

Footnote(s): (a) Since the age of 15. Excludes incidents that occurred more than 20 years ago. (b) Time off work in the 12 months after the most recent incident.

Source(s): Personal Safety, Australia



In comparing men and women who had experienced physical assault by male in the past 20 years, both men and women were unlikely to have taken time off work in the 12 months after their most recent incident of physical assault by a male. An estimated 8.6% of men (199,200 out of the 2,322,800 men who had been physically assaulted by a male) and 14% of women (238,600 out of the 1,716,300 women who had been physically assaulted by a male) had taken time off work in the 12 months after their most recent incident of physical assault by a male.


FURTHER INFORMATION

For further information about the selected characteristics outlined above for the other types of violence, refer to Tables 16 to 20.

For further details of the information collected in the 2012 PSS about the characteristics of a person's most recent incident of violence, refer to the Data item list. Additional information may be made available by request, on a fee for service basis, through the ABS Information Consultancy or on the Confidentialised Unit Record File, which is expected to be released in March 2014.


ENDNOTES

Endnote 1
As information is only collected in relation to the most recent incident, rates will not reflect the total prevalence of different characteristics. For example, if a person had experienced more than one incident of physical assault by a male and had not contacted police about their most recent incident but had about an earlier incident then they have actually contacted the police at some point (just not for their most recent incident). In this instance the characteristics of a person's most recent incident would understate their overall behaviour in reporting of incidents to the police. For further details refer to 'Interpretation of results' in the Explanatory Notes.

Endnote 2
Conceptually it is invalid to add together data about the characteristics for the different types of violence, as actions a person may take could differ depending on the type of violence experienced. For example if a person had contacted the police about their most recent incident of physical assault by a male but had not contacted police about their most recent incident of physical assault by a female, it is impossible to calculate an estimate of whether or not this person has contacted the police about "violence" - they both have and haven't. To add together data about characteristics of the different types of violence would also double count all persons who have experienced more than one type of violence. For further details refer to 'Interpretation of results' in the Explanatory Notes.

Endnote 3
‘Advice or support’ means listening to the respondent, being understanding, making suggestions, giving information, referring respondent to appropriate services, or offering further help of any kind. It includes contacting or visiting any source of help from a friend to a professional organisation, so long as the respondent perceived that they were seeking advice or support. It excludes anyone who was told or found out about the most recent incident, but from whom the respondent did not actively seek advice or support, and help sought for injuries, which did not involve the respondent seeking advice or support.

Endnote 4
It is possible that both the respondent and the perpetrator were under the influence of alcohol &/or drugs. Components therefore will not add to the totals. Refer to the Glossary for more information.


Previous PageNext Page

Bookmark and Share. Opens in a new window


Commonwealth of Australia 2014

Unless otherwise noted, content on this website is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Australia Licence together with any terms, conditions and exclusions as set out in the website Copyright notice. For permission to do anything beyond the scope of this licence and copyright terms contact us.