Violence against women and girls in Mexico increases to more than 70%, according to survey

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Violence against women and girls in Mexico has increased in the last five years, the statistics office said in a survey, with seven in 10 of them reporting experiencing some form of violence.

Mexico’s rising rate of femicide – the killing of women and girls because of their gender – has sparked waves of protests. An average of 10 women are murdered every day in the country and tens of thousands are missing.

“Violence against women persists as one of Mexico’s challenges and constitutes a public health problem,” INEGI president Graciela Márquez said at a press conference on Tuesday.

The INEGI estimated that more than 70% of the 50.5 million Mexicans over the age of 15 have suffered some type of violence, which represents an increase of four percentage points compared to the last time it conducted this survey in 2016.

The number of sexual violence was the one that increased the most, by eight percentage points, reaching half of the women surveyed; 23% of them said they had suffered it in the last 12 months.

Almost 35% stated that they had been victims of physical aggression throughout their lives, compared to 34% in 2016, while 52% said they had suffered psychological abuse, compared to the previous 49%.

The vast majority of women who suffered physical or sexual violence did not formally denounce their aggressor or seek help from any public institution, according to INEGI.

The study also observes a reduction from 29% to 27% in “economic” violence, which includes both labor and property discrimination (the retention of personal property).

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Younger, single women who live in cities and with a higher level of education are the ones who most reported having suffered some type of violence.

The state with the lowest rates was the southern Chiapas, where less than half of those surveyed (49%) declared having suffered some type of violence. At the other extreme, Mexico City and the surrounding State of Mexico recorded the highest incidence, with an average of 77% of women affected.

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