"You burned my food" - and more horrifying reasons men give their partners to justify domestic violence

A woman demonstrating for the Stop Domestic Violence and Abuse on Women campaign
A woman demonstrating for the Stop Domestic Violence and Abuse on Women campaign

It's been over a month since women took to the streets to protest against gender-based violence in South Africa. Women from different backgrounds stood together and marched to demand a better society for women and children and this report by Stats SA sheds some light into why women took to the streets. 

Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) released their Crime Against Women report that is based on the Victims of Crime Survery (VOCS) data and some data from the World Health Organisation (WHO). According to the report, the purpose of this report "is to highlight the gender impact of crime in South Africa, with particular emphasis on the impact of crime on women."

The survey however, does not provide accurate estimates of femicide statistics although it does acknowledge that the numbers seem to have decreased in recent years. 

READ MORE: WATCH: "We deserve to not live in fear that one of us might be the next to lose their life"

The report also notes that crime in general has decreased between 2013/2014 and 2016/2017 however, "crimes against women, such as sexual assaults, increased drastically between 2015/16 and 2016/17," states the report. 

One of the questions that was posed on the survey was whether it was acceptable for a husband to hit his wife based on the 'five wrongs' listed on the survey. The 'five wrongs' were listed as:

  • When a woman goes out without telling him
  • When a woman neglects children
  • When a woman argues with him
  • When a woman refuses to have sex with him
  • When a women burns food 

READ MORE: Here's what we know about femicide in SA - numbers may be decreasing but the reality is still very grim

An overwhelming 51.1% of men think that it is acceptable to hit a woman in general. Here is what some of the stats that were collected look like:

The report further noted that women feel less safe walking during the day or night than men do. It also showed that women are more likely not to do activities like going going to open spaces or parks, wearing what they want or expressing their sexual orientation because of the fear of a crime being committed against them.

"The fear of crime has consequences for women and girls and their ability to achieve their full potential in every sphere of social and productive life," states the report. 

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