Nearly half of Korean women and more than half of Korean men believe that “sexual assault occurs because of revealing clothes,” according to a survey by South Korea’s Ministry of Gender Equality and Family.
The survey: The ministry conducted a 2022 Sexual Violence Safety nationwide survey on 10,020 respondents — both men (51.3%) and women (48.7%) — aged 19 to 64. The study, which is conducted every three years, is to help the government form relevant policies under the Article 4 of the Sexual Violence Prevention and Victim Protection Act.
The results: The survey found that victims of sexual assaults are still likely to be blamed for the crime due to their behavior and choice of clothing. The survey found that 52.1% of males and 39.7% of female respondents agreed that “sexual violence occurs because of revealing clothing.”
For the prompt “allowing kissing means allowing sex,” 37.2% of men and 26.4% of women also agreed. There were 36.2% of males and 27.9% of females who said that “if the victim was intoxicated, they were also responsible,” while 43.4% males and 35.7% females agreed that “many people falsely report sexual assault for financial reasons, anger or retaliation.”
Fear of sexual violence: The survey also found that more than half of Korean women expressed fear of sexual violence when “going out alone at night” (63.4%), when “strangers visit when they’re alone at home” (52.9%) and when “using taxis and public restrooms alone” (51%).
As for the male respondents, only about 10% agreed with each of the statements above.
Digital devices in sex crimes: The study also found that the most common type of sexual crime reported by the respondents were those involving digital devices, including posting victims’ sexual content and demanding illicit images or videos.
Reporting sex crimes: When asked about reporting sexual crimes, only 2.6% of respondents said they sought help from the police at least once. There were 21.1% of female respondents who said they felt uncomfortable during police investigation, with 75.3% of them noting they had to explain the case repeatedly, 45.5% feeling ashamed and humiliated and 36.6% saying that police considered their case to be trivial.