Women wearing sexy clothing at risk of violence

One in seven think it’s okay to hit women wearing sexy clothes in public

One in seven people believe it is acceptable in some circumstances for a man to hit his wife or girlfriend if she is dressed in ‘sexy or revealing clothes in public’, according to the findings of a telephone survey by Ipsos Mori, released today.

A similar number believed that it was all right for a man to slap his wife or girlfriend if she is ‘nagging or constantly moaning at him’.

The findings of the poll, conducted for the Home Office, also disclosed about a quarter of people believe that wearing sexy or revealing clothing should lead to a woman being held partly responsible for being raped or sexually assaulted.

Although a majority of 1,065 people over 18 questioned last month believe that it is never acceptable to hit or slap a woman, the poll found that those aged 25-39 were more likely to consider that there were circumstances in which it was acceptable to hit or slap a woman.

Jacqui Smith, the Home Secretary, said: ‘Violence against women and girls is unacceptable in any form no matter what the circumstances are.’ She was speaking as she launched a police lead review of whether new laws are needed to tackle serial domestic violence abuses and whether there is a link between the early sexualisation of young girls and violent abuse.

One idea being considered is to allow women to ask police if a new partner has a record of domestic violence. A pilot scheme that allows women to request information on whether a new partner has a history of child sex abuse is currently underway in four police force areas of England and Wales.

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